This newt is endemic to most of eastern North America, from the Canadian Maritime Provinces west to the Great Lakes and south to Texas, Alabama, Georgia and Florida.
The eastern newt can be found in both deciduous and coniferous woodland. Adult newts and larvae thrive in small freshwater pools like ponds, small lakes, marshes and dishes preferably with muddy floors. It is not unusual to see adults on land if the aquatic habitat becomes unsuitable or when the climate is dry. Juvenile eft stage newts can be found in lake shores and woodland habitats. The efts are nocturnal and like to rest in cool, moist places. Females lay between 200 and 400 eggs on submerged vegetation each breeding season. Adult newts eat primarily midge larva and many other insect larva and almost any small invertebrate they come across.
Notophthalmus viridescens has an average length range of 2.5 – 4 inches. They have a brown or green coloration patterned with fine black flecks all over the body. Some specimens have a row of red spots on the body as well. The newts have brighter colors on the belly (orange or yellow). Newts have rough, dry skin that is not as slippery as salamander’s skins. The aquatic larvae of this newt have a length of 0.2 – 0.35 inches and they transform to the terrestrial ‘eft’ stage after 2 – 5 months. The efts have a reddish-orange color and also have the red spots present in adults. Efts mature into adults after about 2 – 3 years on land.
Learn more with Schechter Natural History's Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians