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Sirenidae - Sirens

 

Classification

 Kingdom: Animalia
 Phylum: Chordata
 Subphylum: Vertebrata
 Class: Amphibia
 Order: Caudata 
 Family: Sirenidae

Longtail SalamanderThere are only four species of eel-like salamanders in this family. They are found in the southeastern United States and in the Mississippi valley. The dwarf siren is about 6 inches in length and the greater siren at can be as long as three feet in length. The lesser siren is about 11 inches in length.

Sirens are neotenic, that means they don't lose the characteristics they had as larvae when they become adults. They keep their large external gills and gill slits. Sirens are long and slender and have tiny front legs and no hind legs.

Sirens live in slow moving shallow water in swamps, lakes, ponds, and ditches. They are nocturnal and spend the day hidden under the mud or hidden in weeds and aquatic vegetation. They eat invertebrates and plants. Sirens aestivate when there is a drought. They dig into the mud and can live for 1-3 months covered in a cocoon of mucus that keeps them from drying out.

World Status Key
Least ConcernLeast Concern Near ThreatenedNear Threatened VulnerableVulnerable EndangeredEndangered Critically EndangeredCritically Endangered extinct in the wildExtinct in Wild extinctExtinct
Status and range is taken from ICUN Redlist. If no status is listed, there is not enough data to establish status.

US Status Key
Threatened in US Threatened in US Threatened in New Hampshire Threatened in NH Endangered in US Endangered in US Endangered in NH Endangered in NH breeds in nh Breeds N.H. Introduced Introduced
Status taken from US Fish and Wildlife and NH Fish and Game

Location Key
AfricaAfrica AsiaAsia AustraliaAustralia EuropeEurope North AmericaNorth America South AmericaSouth America New Hampshire SpeciesNH More InfoClick for More Info pictureClick for Image

  New Hampshire Species

 

  North/Central American Species

None

 

Narrow-striped Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus axanthus   Least Concern North America image More Info
Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus striatus    Least Concern North America image More Info
Lesser Siren - Siren intermedia   Least Concern North America image More Info
Greater Siren - Siren lacertina   Least Concern North America image More Info

Additional Information

Key: profile Profile Photos Photos Video Video Audio Audio

Narrow-striped Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus axanthus profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The narrow-striped dwarf siren is found in Florida.
Source: AmphibiaWeb Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Narrow-striped Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus axanthus profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The narrow-striped dwarf siren is also known as the southern dwarf siren.
Source: EDGE Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus striatus profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The dwarf siren is found in southern South Carolina, southern Georgia, and Florida.
Source: AmphibiaWeb Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus striatus profile  Least Concern North America
The dwarf siren is nocturnal.
Source: Savannah River Ecology Lab Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus striatus profile  Least Concern North America
The dwarf siren is 4-6 inches in length.
Source: University of Georgia Museum of Natural History Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Dwarf Siren - Pseudobranchus striatus profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The dwarf siren has external gills.
Source: EDGE Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Lesser Siren - Siren intermedia profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The lesser siren is found from along the southern coastal plain from Virginia south to Florida and west to southern Texas and northeastern Mexico and along the Mississippi valley from Michigan to Louisiana.
Source: Animal Diversity Web Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: Yes

Lesser Siren - Siren intermedia profile Photos  Least Concern North America
Lesser sirens survive drought and the drying of their habitat by retreating into crayfish tunnels.
Source: AmphibiaWeb Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Lesser Siren - Siren intermedia profile Photos  Least Concern North America
Lesser sirens are found in ditches, lakes, ponds, and streams.
Source: Savannah River Ecology Lab Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Greater Siren - Siren lacertina profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The greater siren is found along the southern coastal plain from Virginia south to Florida and along the Gulf Coast from Florida to Alabama.
Source: AmphibiaWeb Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Greater Siren - Siren lacertina profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The greater siren 19-38 inches in length.
Source: AmphibiaWeb Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Greater Siren - Siren lacertina profile Photos  Least Concern North America
The greater siren is usually found in  slow or still bodies of water that are heavily vegetated.
Source: Savannah River Ecology Lab Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No