Small range that straddles the central section of border between Tennessee and North Carolina.
This species lives on the floors of hardwood and coniferous forests. It particularly likes rocky areas with mossy ground cover and plentiful leaf litter where red spruce or Fraser fir trees grow. It is rarely found below 2000 feet in elevation. Like most salamanders, it frequently burrows underground and hides under rock and logs.
This slender-bodied salamander is named for its distinct pinkish-orange cheeks that contrast the rest of its slate grey body. It averages 3.5-5 inches in total length, has 15-16 very obvious costal grooves, and skinny legs. It has a narrow, flat head with bulging dark eyes. Its tail is round in cross-section, and about the same length as its body. Its ventrum is pale grey and unmarked.
Learn more with Schechter Natural History's Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians