SREL Reprint #2548




Ambystoma maculatum (Spotted Salamander). Reproduction

Brian Metts

Savannah River Ecology Lab, Aiken, South Carolina 29801, USA

Introduction: Egg masses of spotted salamanders (Ambystoma maculatum) can either be clear, white, or intermediate in color depending on the presence of proteins in the outer jelly layers (Hardy and Lucas 1991. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. 100A:653-660; Ruth et al. 1993. J. Herpetol. 27:306-314). Ruth et al. (op. cit.) found no adaptive advantage of white versus clear masses, whereas Brodman (1995 J. Herpetol. 29:111-113) found that white masses contained more eggs on average than clear masses. Often the outer jelly membrane surrounding the eggs of A. maculatum is colonized by a symbiotic, unicellular green alga (Oophila amblystomatis) that increases oxygen supply to the developing embryos (Gilbert 1942. Ecology 23:215-227; Gilbert 1944. Ecology 25:366-369; Gatz 1973. J. Herpetol. 7:137-138; Backman et al. 1986. Can. J. Zool. 64:1586-1588; Pinder and Friet 1994. J. Exp. Biol. 197:17-30).
Five clear and five white A. maculatum egg masses were collected at random on 9 March 2000 from a small seasonal wetland located on the Pine Ridge Country Club in Edgefield County, South Carolina, USA. Color of each mass and eggs was recorded. . . .

SREL Reprint #2548

Metts, B. 2001. Ambystoma Maculatum (Spotted salamander). Reproduction. Herpetological Review 32:98-99.

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