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Amphibians and Reptiles in Minnesota

2014
Authors:

John J. Moriarty and Carol D. Hall

Amphibians and Reptiles in Minnesota

The most comprehensive and up-to-date guide to Minnesota’s reptiles and amphibians

Amateur and professional alike will find this book a comprehensive source and a user-friendly guide, invaluable for discovering, identifying, and learning about any of Minnesota’s fifty-three amphibian and reptile species from the common American Toad to the little seen Western Ratsnake. This handbook takes readers through the steps for studying these species in the field.

Snakes on the patio, salamanders in the basement, frogs crossing the road, and turtles nesting on the shore in the land of 10,000 lakes: from the enchanted child to the curious adult, from the amateur naturalist to the dedicated conservationist, living with wildlife in Minnesota means finding amphibians and reptiles in prairies and forests and your own backyard.

Amateur and professional alike will find this book a comprehensive source and a user-friendly guide, invaluable for discovering, identifying, and learning about any of the state’s fifty-three amphibian and reptile species from the common American Toad to the little seen Western Ratsnake. This handbook takes readers through the steps for studying these species in the field.

Including current information about designations of species in need of conservation, this reference covers the latest research and work on environmental threats and amphibian and reptile protection, such as the deformed frog phenomenon, turtle legislation, climate change, and habitat restoration. With more than 200 photographs, written descriptions, county-based maps, habitat and distribution data, life histories, and circular keys to adult and larval specimens, the book brings readers up-to-date on Minnesota’s new species and changes to scientific names. Amphibians and Reptiles in Minnesota is the most complete and authoritative guide of its kind.

Information in this book was partly funded by proceeds of the Minnesota Environmental and Natural Resources Trust Fund as recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources.

Amphibians and Reptiles in Minnesota

John J. Moriarty is senior wildlife manager for Three Rivers Park District, a regional park system; coauthor of Amphibians and Reptiles Native to Minnesota (Minnesota, 1994); and author of Turtles and Turtle Watching for the North Central States. He started the Minnesota Frog and Toad Survey.

Carol D. Hall has worked for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources since 1991 coordinating statewide amphibian and reptile surveys for the Minnesota Biological Survey.

Carrol L. Henderson has been Nongame Wildlife Program supervisor since 1977 at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Amphibians and Reptiles in Minnesota

Contents

Minnesota County Map
Foreword Carrol L. Henderson
Preface and Acknowledgments
Introduction
Checklist of the Amphibians and Reptiles in Minnesota

Class Amphibia
Family Bufonidae—True Toads
American Toad, Anaxyrus americanus
Great Plains Toad, Anaxyrus cognatus
Canadian Toad, Anaxyrus hemiophrys

Family Hylidae—Treefrogs
Blanchard’s Cricket Frog, Acris blanchardi
Cope’s Gray Treefrog, Hyla chrysoscelis
Gray Treefrog, Hyla versicolor
Spring Peeper, Pseudacris crucifer
Boreal Chorus Frog, Pseudacris maculata

Family Ranidae—True Frogs
American Bullfrog, Lithobates catesbeianus
Green Frog, Lithobates clamitans
Pickerel Frog, Lithobates palustris
Northern Leopard Frog, Lithobates pipiens
Mink Frog, Lithobates septentrionalis
Wood Frog, Lithobates sylvaticus

Family Ambystomatidae—Mole Salamanders
Blue-Spotted Salamander, Ambystoma laterale
Spotted Salamander, Ambystoma maculatum
Western Tiger Salamander, Ambystoma mavortium
Eastern Tiger Salamander, Ambystoma tigrinum

Family Plethodontidae—Lungless Salamanders
Four-Toed Salamander, Hemidactylium scutatum
Eastern Red-Backed Salamander, Plethodon cinereus

Family Proteidae—Waterdogs and Mudpuppies
Mudpuppy, Necturus maculosus

Family Salamandridae—Newts
Eastern Newt, Notophthalmus viridescens

Class Reptilia
Family Scincidae—Skinks
Common Five-Lined Skink, Plestiodon fasciatus
Prairie Skink, Plestiodon septentrionalis

Family Teiidae—Racerunners and Whiptails
Six-Lined Racerunner, Aspidoscelis sexlineatus

Family Colubridae—Colubrid Snakes
North American Racer, Coluber constrictor
Ring-Necked Snake, Diadophis punctatus
Plains Hog-Nosed Snake, Heterodon nasicus
Eastern Hog-Nosed Snake, Heterodon platirhinos
Milksnake, Lampropeltis triangulum
Common Watersnake, Nerodia sipedon
Smooth Greensnake, Opheodrys vernalis
Western Ratsnake, Pantherophis obsoletus
Western Foxsnake, Pantherophis ramspotti
Gophersnake, Pituophis catenifer
Dekay’s Brownsnake, Storeria dekayi
Red-Bellied Snake, Storeria occipitomaculata
Plains Gartersnake, Thamnophis radix
Common Gartersnake, Thamnophis sirtalis
Lined Snake, Tropidoclonion lineatum

Family Viperidae—Pit Vipers
Timber Rattlesnake, Crotalus horridus
Massasauga, Sistrurus catenatus

Family Chelydridae—Snapping Turtles
Snapping Turtle, Chelydra serpentina

Family Emydidae—Pond and River Turtles
Painted Turtle, Chrysemys picta
Blanding’s Turtle, Emydoidea blandingii
Wood Turtle, Glyptemys insculpta
Northern Map Turtle, Graptemys geographica
Southern Map Turtle, Graptemys ouachitensis
False Map Turtle, Graptemys pseudogeographica
Pond Slider, Trachemys scripta

Family Kinosternidate—Musk Turtles
Eastern Musk Turtle, Sternotherus odoratus

Family Trionychidae—Softshells
Smooth Softshell, Apalone mutica
Spiny Softshell, Apalone spinifera


Species of Possible Occurrence
Woodhouse’s Toad, Anaxyrus woodhousii
Plains Leopard Frog, Lithobates blairi
Plains Spadefoot, Spea bombifrons


Glossary
Resources
Literature Cited
Index