Dicamptodon copei Nussbaum, 1970

Class: Amphibia > Order: Caudata > Family: Ambystomatidae > Genus: Dicamptodon > Species: Dicamptodon copei

Dicamptodon copei Nussbaum, 1970, Copeia, 1970: 506. Holotype: USNM 166784, by original designation. Type locality: "Mar[r]atta Creek, 85 m upstream from bridge on state highway 504, SW 1/4 Sec. 3, T. 9 N., R. 4 E., 46° 17′ N, 122° 18′ W, 840 m elevation, Cowlitz County, Washington", USA; type locality buried under 33 m of volcanic sediment from 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens, according to Nussbaum, 1983, Cat. Am. Amph. Rept., 334: 1.

English Names

Cope's Giant Salamander (Collins, Huheey, Knight, and Smith, 1978, Herpetol. Circ., 7: 5; Frank and Ramus, 1995, Compl. Guide Scient. Common Names Amph. Rept. World: 28; Collins, 1997, Herpetol. Circ., 25: 6; Crother, Boundy, Campbell, de Queiroz, Frost, Highton, Iverson, Meylan, Reeder, Seidel, Sites, Taggart, Tilley, and Wake, 2001 "2000", Herpetol. Circ., 29: 21; Stebbins, 2003, Field Guide W. Rept. Amph., Ed. 3: 160; Tilley, Highton, and Wake, 2012, in Crother (ed.), Herpetol. Circ., 39: 17; Collins and Taggart, 2009, Standard Common Curr. Sci. Names N. Am. Amph. Turtles Rept. Crocodil., ed. 6: 10; Highton, Bonett, and Jockusch, 2017, in Crother (ed.), Herpetol. Circ., 43: 26).


Olympic Peninsula, Washington, south through the southern Cascades and Willapa Hills to streams that drain into the Columbia River gorge in northwestern Oregon, USA, 9–1370 m elevation.

Geographic Occurrence

Natural Resident: United States of America, United States of America - Oregon, United States of America - Washington

Endemic: United States of America


See accounts by Nussbaum, 1983, Cat. Am. Amph. Rept., 334: 1–2, Petranka, 1998, Salamand. U.S. Canada: 147–149, and Bury, 2005, in Lannoo (ed.), Amph. Declines: 652–653. Stebbins, 2003, Field Guide W. Rept. Amph., Ed. 3: 160–161, and Raffaëlli, 2007, Les Urodèles du Monde: 74, provided brief accounts, figures, and maps. Raffaëlli, 2013, Urodeles du Monde, 2nd ed.: 89, provided a brief account, photo, and map. Altig and McDiarmid, 2015, Handb. Larval Amph. US and Canada: 96–98, provided an account of larval morphology. Raffaëlli, 2022, Salamanders & Newts of the World: 134–135, provided an account, summarizing systematics, life history, population status, and distribution (including a polygon map). Tighe, 2022, Smithson. Contrib. Zool., 654: 14, briefly discussed the secondary types. 

External links:

Please note: these links will take you to external websites not affiliated with the American Museum of Natural History. We are not responsible for their content.