Red-Spotted Newt*

Red-spotted newt* Notophthalamus viridescens

red spotted newtred spotted newt belly

Identification: The red-spotted newt is typically between 2.25 and 4.8 inches. During its aquatic adult stage, they will have a green to yellow to brown backside, and a pale yellow belly covered with black dots. They have two dorsolateral rows of red spots with black borders. Its tail will be flat. During the terrestrial “red eft” stage, the body will be bright orange or red. Its tail will be rounded and its skin will be rough. At this stage, it will only be 1.5 to 3.5 inches in length. The tadpole is brown and green. (See “other” below for life stages).

Habitat: Adults are found in permanent bodies of water, such as ponds, marshes, and shallow lakes. Terrestrial red efts are found in open moist forest floors after rain events. They also hide under logs, bark, stones, and leaves.

Other: The red-spotted newt has four distinct life stages: the egg, aquatic larvae, terrestrial adult (red eft), and aquatic adult (newt). Juvenile red-efts spend 1-3 years on land before returning to the water. Adults may be active throughout winters on pond bottoms or in streams.