They are found at the Blue Ridge Physiographic Province from western Virginia to North Carolina (between Linville Falls and McKinney Gap on the Blue Ridge Divide) in the south-eastern part of the United States
They thrive on wet rock faces, in seepages, along streams. In wet weather, you may find salamanders in adjacent wooded areas. They are found more terrestrial at higher elevations. The Blue Ridge dusky salamander feeds on invertebrates that roam the forest floor. Females lay their eggs under rocks, logs, moss or flowing water.
It is a medium-sized salamander (2.5 – 4.5 in) with wavy, or blotched striped dorsal color pattern. Colors can vary from light brown through shades of yellow and bright red. This species is very similar to others of its genus. They have a rounded tail and a line of light color from the eye to the jaw. Specimens can be seen to have a stripe that runs down the back. Stripe color can vary from red to orange, to yellow, to brown or even yellow. Instead of a stripe, some individuals can have spots or flecks on the back. Some of these salamanders have red legs or cheek patches. Hatchling salamanders have external gills and spend about 10 months as fully aquatic larvae.
Learn more with Schechter Natural History's Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians