Siren reticulata Graham, Kline, Steen & Kelehear, 2018
|Species Description: Graham SP, Kline R, Steen DA, and Kelehear C. 2018. Description of an extant salamander from Gulf Coastal Plain of North America: the reticulated siren, Siren reticulata. PLoS ONE 13: e0207460.|
© 2020 Kevin G. Hutcheson (1 of 2)
Siren reticulata can be distinguished morphologically from other species of Siren in by patterning and the number of costal grooves. The distinctive reticulate spotted pattern is lacking in S. intermedia; those individuals that do exhibit spotting only have small, sparse, round dots. Similarly, S. lacertina lacks spots but instead has rather small green or gold flecks that are sparsely distributed. In addition, the patterning of S. lacertina and S. intermedia fades in preservation, while that of S. reticulata is retained. Additionally, S. reticulata has more costal grooves than S. lacertina, S. i. intermedia, and S. i. nettingi (Graham et al. 2018).
The dorsal side of S. reticulata is olive-grey with a reticulate, irregular pattern of large, dark spots. Sparse spots pattern the head and become denser from the gill arches to the tail. The flanks are yellow-green, and the ventral surface is a light olive green-yellow. Each hand has four black-tipped fingers. The eyes are opaque black. The distinctive reticulate pattern is retained well in preserved specimens (Graham et al. 2018).
Some specimens have a marked horizontal boundary where the spotted pattern stops along the flanks, while in others the pattern continues down the flanks onto the ventral surface (Graham et al. 2018).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: United States
U.S. state distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Alabama, Florida
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
The holotype specimen, an adult female, has hundreds of developing follicles. This indicates high female fecundity, as seen in S. lacertina (Graham et al. 2018).
Siren lacertina may be parapatric with S. reticulata as the former has been found immediately east of Florala in Geneva and Henry Counties, Alabama (Graham et al. 2018).
Trends and Threats
Relation to Humans
The specific epithet, "reticulata", is a reference to the reticulated pattern found in all specimens used for the species description. This patterning is also referenced in the species' colloquially name, Leopard Eel, although it is neither a leopard or an eel (Graham et al. 2018).
Bailey, M.A., Holmes, J.N., Buhlmann, K.A., Mitchell, J.C. (2006). “Habitat management guidelines for amphibians and reptiles of the Southeastern United States.” Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Technical Publication HMG-2, Montgomery, Alabama.
Blaustein, R. (2008). “Biodiversity hotspot: The Florida Panhandle.” BioScience, 58(9), 784-790. [link]
Graham, S.P., Kline, R., Steen, D.A., Kelehear, C. (2018). “Description of an extant salamander from the Gulf Coastal Plain of North America: the reticulated siren, Siren reticulata.” PLoS ONE, 13(12), e0207460. [link]
Originally submitted by: Annabella Espinoza (2022-05-10)
Description by: Annabella Espinoza (updated 2022-05-10)
Distribution by: Annabella Espinoza (updated 2022-05-10)
Life history by: Annabella Espinoza (updated 2022-05-10)
Trends and threats by: Annabella Espinoza (updated 2022-05-10)
Relation to humans by: Annabella Espinoza (updated 2022-05-10)
Comments by: Annabella Espinoza (updated 2022-05-10)
Edited by: Jessica Pan (2022-05-10)
Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2022 Siren reticulata: Reticulated Siren <https://amphibiaweb.org/species/8935> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Sep 24, 2023.
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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2023. <https://amphibiaweb.org> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 24 Sep 2023.
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