Copyright © 2001 L.I. Reptiles
Tiger Salamander
Breeding and Larval Habitat
Tiger salamanders are Long Island's earliest breeders. They move to vernal or permanent fishless ponds as early as January, but usually February/March. During or right after the first rainy night following moderate temperatures, Tigers return to the pond to breed. Males arrive first and stay longest. Females come to the pond, breed and leave. Males wait around for more females. Mating and egg laying occur in the water. The female will lay a total of ~200 eggs, but in several small masses of 50-75 eggs. Eggs hatch and larvae mature in the pond, leaving after metamorphing.
Adult Habitat - Woodlands
On Long Island, Tiger salamanders are primarily associated with the Central Pine Barrens. They are mostly in moist sandy areas with small ponds nearby. Most adults stay within a quarter mile of the pond. Adults spend most of their lives underground and are decent burrowers. They will also hide in small animal burrows and beneath surface materials such as fallen wood, logs and bark. They feed on small invertebrates such as larval and adult insects, crustaceans, snails, earthworms and slugs.