Batrachoseps attenuatus (Eschscholtz, 1833)

Class: Amphibia > Order: Caudata > Family: Plethodontidae > Subfamily: Hemidactyliinae > Genus: Batrachoseps > Species: Batrachoseps attenuatus

Salamandrina attenuata Eschscholtz, 1833, Zool. Atlas, Part 5: 1. Type(s): Not stated or known to exist, but by implication of statements regarding types of Triton ensatus Eschscholtz, possibly originally in Dorpat (= Tartu, Estonia) or Rostock (Germany). Type locality: "Umbegung der Bai St. Francisco auf Californien" (= Vicinity of the Bay of San Francisco, California), USA.

Batrachoseps attenuatusBonaparte, 1839, Iconograph. Fauna Ital., 2 (Fasc. 26): fol. 131.

Batrachoseps attenuataBaird, 1850 "1849", J. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia, Ser. 2, 1: 288.

Batrachoseps caudatus Cope, 1889, Bull. U.S. Natl. Mus., 34: 126. Holotype: USNM 13561, by original designation. Type locality: "Hassler Harbor, Alaska", USA; probably on Annette Island according to Stejneger and Barbour, 1917, Check List N. Am. Amph. Rept.: 13); best regarded as a documentation error in museum records unless substantiated (DRF). Synonymy by Wake, Jockusch, and Papenfuss, 1998, Herpetol. Rev., 29: 13.

Batrachoseps attenuatus attenuatusDunn, 1926, Salamanders Fam. Plethodontidae: 224.

Batrachoseps attenuatus caudatusDunn, 1926, Salamanders Fam. Plethodontidae: 232.

Batrachoseps (Batrachoseps) attenuatusJockusch and Wake, 2002, Biol. J. Linn. Soc., 76: 363.

English Names

Alaska Worm-salamander (Batrachoseps caudatus [no longer recognized]: Bishop, 1943, Handb. Salamanders: 320).

Alaska Salamander (Batrachoseps attenuatus caudatus [no longer recognized]: Slevin, 1928, Occas. Pap. California Acad. Sci., 16: 42).

Slender Lizard (Batrachoseps attenuatus: Yarrow, 1882, Bull. U.S. Natl. Mus., 24: 21; Storer, 1925, Univ. California Publ. Zool., 27: 43).

Slender Salamander (Cooper, 1873, Proc. California Acad. Sci., 4: 64). 

Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps attenuatus attenuatus [no longer recognized]: Slevin, 1928, Occas. Pap. California Acad. Sci., 16: 47).

California Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps attenuatus: Stebbins, 1951, Amph. W. North Am.: 108; Schmidt, 1953, Check List N. Am. Amph. Rept., Ed. 6: 40; Conant, Cagle, Goin, Lowe, Neill, Netting, Schmidt, Shaw, Stebbins, and Bogert, 1956, Copeia, 1956: 173; Stebbins, 1966, Field Guide W. North Am. Rept. Amph.: 47; Collins, Huheey, Knight, and Smith, 1978, Herpetol. Circ., 7: 5; Frank and Ramus, 1995, Compl. Guide Scient. Common Names Amph. Rept. World: 29; Collins, 1997, Herpetol. Circ., 25: 5; Crother, Boundy, Campbell, de Queiroz, Frost, Highton, Iverson, Meylan, Reeder, Seidel, Sites, Taggart, Tilley, and Wake, 2001 "2000", Herpetol. Circ., 29: 19; Stebbins, 2003, Field Guide W. Rept. Amph., Ed. 3: 194; Collins and Taggart, 2009, Standard Common Curr. Sci. Names N. Am. Amph. Turtles Rept. Crocodil., ed. 6: 11; Tilley, Highton, and Wake, 2012, in Crother (ed.), Herpetol. Circ., 39: 24; Highton, Bonett, and Jockusch, 2017, in Crother (ed.), Herpetol. Circ., 43: 24).

Worm-salamander (Batrachoseps attenuatus: Bishop, 1943, Handb. Salamanders: 311).

Northern Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps attenuatus: Conant, Cagle, Goin, Lowe, Neill, Netting, Schmidt, Shaw, Stebbins, and Bogert, 1956, Copeia, 1956: 174).


Southwestern coastal Oregon through western California southward to southern Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, and northern San Benito counties, and the slopes of the Sierra Nevada in northern California below 1000 m, and a few scattered localities in the northern Sacramento Valley, USA. See comment. 


See accounts by Petranka, 1998, Salamand. U.S. Canada: 220–223, Boundy, 2000, Cat. Am. Amph. Rept., 701: 1–6, and Hansen and Wake, 2005, in Lannoo (ed.), Amph. Declines: 667–669. In the Batrachoseps (Batrachoseps) attenuatus group of Jockusch, Wake, and Yanev, 1998, Contrib. Sci. Nat. Hist. Mus. Los Angeles Co., 472: 1–17, and Jockusch and Wake, 2002, Biol. J. Linn. Soc., 76: 363 (who provided evidence for the likelihood of several new species masquerading under this name). Stebbins, 2003, Field Guide W. Rept. Amph., Ed. 3: 194–195, and Raffaëlli, 2013, Urodeles du Monde, 2nd ed.: 255, provided brief accounts, figures, and maps. Martínez-Solano, Jockusch, and Wake, 2007, Mol. Ecol., 16: 4335–4355, provided a phylogeographic study that suggested that nominal Batrachoseps attenuatus is likely a complex composed of at least five species. Highton, 2014, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 71: 127–141, suggested on the basis of molecular analysis that there are 39 cryptic species covered under the name Batrachoseps attenuatus. Olson, Scott, and Shaffer, 2021, J. Herpetol., 55: 38–45, reported on mtDNA phylogeography of an isolated population in Sutter Buttes and its relationship to Sierran and coastal portions of the range of the nominal species. 

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