CaliforniaHerps.com

A Guide to the Amphibians
and Reptiles of California


Sources of Information About California Reptiles and Amphibians









observation link





Books Including Information about Herp Species that Occur in California

 

Books Containing Information Specifically About California Reptiles and Amphibians       
(See our Book Page for more information about selected books.)

Stebbins, Robert C., and McGinnis, Samuel M.  Field Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles of California: Revised Edition (California Natural History Guides) University of California Press, 2012.

Stebbins, Robert C. California Amphibians and Reptiles. The University of California Press, 1972.

Thelander, Carl G., editor in chief. Life on the Edge - A Guide to California's Endangered Natural Resources - Wildlife. Berkeley: Bio Systems Books, 1994.

Flaxington, William Craig. Field Observations of California Amphibians and Reptiles. 2002

Macey, J. Robert and Theodore Papenfuss."Herpetology." The Natural History of the White-Inyo Range Eastern California. Ed. Clarence Hall. University of California Press, 1991.

Basey, Harold E. Discovering Sierra Reptiles and Amphibians. Yosemite Association and Sequoia Natural History Association, 1976, 1991.

Shedd, Jackson D. Amphibians and Reptiles of Bidwell Park. Quadco Printing, Chico. 2005

Lemm, Jeffrey. Field Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles of the San Diego Region (California Natural History Guides). University of California Press, 2006.

 

Herps of Specific Regions of Western North America

Stebbins, Robert C. A Field Guide to Western Reptiles and Amphibians. 3rd Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2003.

Behler, John L., and F. Wayne King. The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Reptiles and Amphibians. Alfred A. Knopf, 1992.

Powell, Robert., Joseph T. Collins, and Errol D. Hooper Jr. A Key to Amphibians and Reptiles of the Continental United States and Canada. The University Press of Kansas, 1998.

Degenhardt, William G., Charles W. Painter, & Andrew H. Price. Amphibians and Reptiles of New Mexico. University of New Mexico Press,1996.

Conant, Roger, & Joseph T. Collins. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians Eastern and Central North America. Third Edition, Houghton Mifflin
Company, 1998.

Brennan, Thomas C., & Andrew T. Holycross. A Field Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles in Arizona. Arizona Game and Fish Department, 2006.

Nussbaum, R. A., E. D. Brodie Jr., and R. M. Storm. Amphibians and Reptiles of the Pacific Northwest. Moscow, Idaho: University Press of Idaho, 1983.

 

Amphibians

Ronald Altig and Roy W. McDiarmid. Handbook of Larval Amphibians of the United States and Canada. Comstock Publishing Associates, 2015.

Bartlett, R. D. & Patricia P. Bartlett. Guide and Reference to the Amphibians of Western North America (North of Mexico) and Hawaii. University Press of Florida, 2009.

Corkran, Charlotte and Chris Thoms. Amphibians of Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia. Lone Pine Publishing, 1996.

Jones, Lawrence L. C., William P. Leonard, and Deanna H. Olson, editors. Amphibians of the Pacific Northwest. Seattle Audubon Society, 2005.

Lannoo, Michael (Editor). Amphibian Declines: The Conservation Status of United States Species. University of California Press, June 2005.

Leonard et. al. Amphibians of Washington and Oregon. Seattle Audubon Society, 1993.

Nussbaum, R. A., E. D. Brodie Jr., and R. M. Storm. Amphibians and Reptiles of the Pacific Northwest. Moscow, Idaho: University Press of Idaho, 1983.

Storer, Tracy I. A Synopsis of the Amphibia of California. University of Califonia Publications in Zoology Volume 27, The University of California Press, 1925.

Green, David M., Linda A. Weir, Gary S. Casper, and Michael J. Lannoo. North American Amphibians- Distribution & Diversity. University of California Press, 2013.

 

Frogs

Bartlett, R. D. & Patricia P. Bartlett. Guide and Reference to the Amphibians of Western North America (North of Mexico) and Hawaii. University Press of Florida, 2009.

Elliott, Lang, Carl Gerhardt, and Carlos Davidson. Frogs and Toads of North America, a Comprehensive Guide to their Identification, Behavior, and Calls. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009.

Lannoo, Michael (Editor). Amphibian Declines: The Conservation Status of United States Species. University of California Press, June 2005.

Storer, Tracy I. A Synopsis of the Amphibia of California. University of California Press Berkeley, California 1925.

Wright, Albert Hazen and Anna Wright. Handbook of Frogs and Toads of the United States and Canada. Cornell University Press, 1949.

Dodd, C. Kenneth. Frogs of the United States and Canada, 2-volumes. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2013.

Mattison, Chris. Frogs and Toads of the World. Cassell Illustrated, London, 1992.

 

Salamanders

Bartlett, R. D. & Patricia P. Bartlett. Guide and Reference to the Amphibians of Western North America (North of Mexico) and Hawaii. University Press of Florida, 2009.

Bishop, Sherman C. Handbook of Salamanders. Cornell University Press, 1943.

Lannoo, Michael (Editor). Amphibian Declines: The Conservation Status of United States Species. University of California Press, June 2005.

Petranka, James W. Salamanders of the United States and Canada. Smithsonian Institution, 1998.

 

Reptiles

Brown et. al. Reptiles of Washington and Oregon. Seattle Audubon Society,1995.

Nussbaum, R. A., E. D. Brodie Jr., and R. M. Storm. Amphibians and Reptiles of the Pacific Northwest. Moscow, Idaho: University Press of Idaho, 1983.

St. John, Alan D. Reptiles of the Northwest: Alaska to California; Rockies to the Coast. Lone Pine Publishing, 2002.

Ernst, Carl H. and Evelyn M. Ernst. Venomous Reptiles of the United States, Canada, and Northern Mexico: Heloderma, Micruroides, Micrurus, Pelamis, Agkistrodon, Sistrurus (Volumes 1 & 2)  Johns Hopkins University Press. 2011

 

Snakes

Bartlett, R. D. & Patricia P. Bartlett. Guide and Reference to the Snakes of Western North America (North of Mexico) and Hawaii. University Press of Florida, 2009.

Bartlett, R. D. & Alan Tennant. Snakes of North America - Western Region. Gulf Publishing Co., 2000.

Brown, Philip R. A Field Guide to Snakes of California. Gulf Publishing Co., 1997.

Ernst, Carl H., Evelyn M. Ernst, & Robert M. Corker. Snakes of the United States and Canada. Smithsonian Institution Press, 2003.

Wright, Albert Hazen & Anna Allen Wright. Handbook of Snakes of the United States and Canada. Cornell University Press, 1957.

Ernst, Carl. H. Venomous Reptiles of North America. Smithsonian Institution Press, 1999.

Hayes, William K., Kent R. Beaman, Michael D. Cardwell, and Sean P. Bush, editors. The Biology of Rattlesnakes. Loma Linda University Press, 2009.

Hubbs, Brian R., & Brendan O'Connor. A Guide to the Rattlesnakes and other Venomous Serpents of the United States. Tricolor Books, 2011.

Klauber, Laurence M. Rattlesnakes. University of California Press. (Abridged from the 1956 two volume Rattlesnakes: Their Habits, Life Histories, and Influence on Mankind.) University of California Press, 1982.

Rubio, Manny. Rattlesnake - Portrait of a Predator. Smithsonian Institution Press, 1998.

Walls, Jerry G. Rattlesnakes: Their Natural History and Care. T. F. H. Publications, Inc., 1996.

Rossman, Douglas A., Neil B.Ford, & Richard A. Siegel. The Garter Snakes - Evolution and Ecology. University of Oklahoma Press, 1996.

Hubbs, Brian. Mountain Kings - A Collective Natural History of California, Sonoran, Durango and Queretaro Mountain Kingsnakes. Tricolor Books, 2004.

Hubbs, Brian. Common Kingsnakes, A Natural History of Lampropeltis getula. 2009.

Hubbs, Brian. Harmless Snakes of the West. Tricolor Books, 2013.

Ernst, Carl H. and Evelyn M. Ernst. Venomous Reptiles of the United States, Canada, and Northern Mexico: Crotalus (Volume 2. Johns Hopkins University Press. 2011

Mulks, Mitchell. Zonata, the California Mountain Kingsnake. LM Digital, 2004.

 

Lizards

Bartlett, R. D. & Patricia P. Bartlett. Guide and Reference to the Turtles and Lizards of Western North America (North of Mexico) and Hawaii. University Press of Florida, 2009.

Jones, Lawrence, Rob Lovich, editors. Lizards of the American Southwest: A Photographic Field Guide. Rio Nuevo Publishers, 2009.

Smith, Hobart M. Handbook of Lizards, Lizards of the United States and of Canada. Cornell University Press, 1946.

Brown, David E. & Neil B. Carmony. Gila Monster: Facts and Folklore of America's Aztec Lizard. High-Lonesome Books, 1991.

Sanborn, Sherburn R. The Lizard-Watching Guide - The Common Lizards of Southern California's Mojave and Colorado Deserts. Lorraine Press, 1994.

Sherbrooke, Wade C. Horned Lizards, Unique Reptiles of Western North America. Southwest Parks and Monuments Association, 1981.

Sherbrooke, Wade C. Introduction to Horned Lizards of North America. University of California Press, 2003.

 

Turtles

Bartlett, R. D. & Patricia P. Bartlett. Guide and Reference to the Turtles and Lizards of Western North America (North of Mexico) and Hawaii. University Press of Florida, 2009.

Carr, Archie. Handbook of Turtles: The Turtles of the United States, Canada, and Baja California. Cornell University Press, 1969.

Ernst, Carl H., Roger W. Barbour, & Jeffrey E. Lovich. Turtles of the United States and Canada. Smithsonian Institution 1994. (2nd Edition published 2009)

 

Eastern North America

Robert Powell, Roger Conant, and Joseph T. Collins. Peterson Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of Eastern and Central North America. Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016.

Conant, Roger, and Joseph T. Collins. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians Eastern and Central North America. Third Edition, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1998.

 

Baja California

Grismer, L. Lee. Amphibians and Reptiles of Baja California, Including Its Pacific Islands and the Islands in the Sea of Cortés. The University of California Press, 2002.

McPeak, Ron H. Amphibians and Reptiles of Baja California. Sea Challengers, 2000.

 

Texas Herps

Dixon, James R. and John E. Werler. Texas Snakes, Identification, Distribution, and Natural History. University of Texas Press, Austin Texas, 2000.

Dixon, James R. and John E. Werler. Texas Snakes, A Field Guide. University of Texas Press, Austin Texas, 2000, 2005.

Dixon, James R. Amphibians and Reptiles of Texas. Texas A&M University Press, College Station Texas, 2000.

Garrett, Judith M. and David G. Barker. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of Texas. Gulf Publishing Company, Houston Texas, 1987.

Price, Andrew H. Poisonous Snakes of Texas. Texas Parks and Wildlife Press, 1998.

Tennant, Alan. Lone Star Field Guide to Texas Snakes. Taylor Trade Publishing, 2006.

Tipton, Bob L., Terry L. Hibbitts, Troy D. Hibbits, Toby J. Hibbitts, Travis J. LaDuc. Texas Amphibians: A Field Guide (Texas Natural History Guides) University of Texas Press, 2012.

Troy D. Hibbitts, Bob L. Tipton, Terry L. Hibbitts, Toby J. Hibbitts, and Travis J. LaDuc. Texas Lizards: A Field Guide (Texas Natural History Guides). University of Texas press 2015.

Troy D. Hibbitts and Terry L. Hibbitts. Texas Turtles & Crocodilians: A Field Guide (Texas Natural History Guides). University of Texas Press, 2016.


General Interest Books about Herps, Herping & Natural History

Anthony, Leslie. Snakebit: Confessions of a Herpetologist. Greystone Books, 2008.

Bartlett, Richard D. In Search of Reptiles & Amphibians. E. J. Brill, 1987.
   (Many enjoyable tales of Dick's herping expeditions. Also recommended are his (sadly, now defunct) monthly columns "Notes From the Field" in Reptiles     magazine.)

Alan Burdick. Out of Eden: An Odyssey of Ecological Invasion. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2006.

Carr, Archie. So Excellent a Fishe: A Natural History of Sea Turtles. American Museum of Natural History, 1967.

Carr, Archie. The Windward Road

Carroll, David M. Swampwalker's Journal - A Wetlands Year. Houghton Mifflin Company, 1999.
   (A brilliant work from a master naturalist and artist who has an extraordinary understanding of the natural world.)

Carroll, David M. The Year of the Turtle: A Natural History. Camden House Publishing, Inc. 1991.
  (Another wonderful immersion into the world of turtles and their habitats.)

Carroll, David M. Following the Water: A Hydromancer's Notebook

Carroll, David M. A Self-Portrait with Turtles

Christy, Bryan. The Lizard King. Hachette Book Group USA, 2008.
    (The exciting true story of herp smugglers, the law enforcement officers who bring them to justice, and the global trade in herps.)

Conant, Roger. A Field Guide to the Life and Times of Roger Conant

Crump, Marty. In Search of the Golden Frog

Ditmars, Raymond. Thrills of a Naturalist's Quest

Freed, Paul. Of Golden Toads and Serpent's Roads. Texas A & M, 2003.
    (Fun tales of herping around the world.)

Gould, Steven Jay. Bully for Brontosaurus. W. N. Norton & Company, 1991.

Green, Harry W. Snakes -The Evolution of Mystery in Nature. University of California Press, 1997.
   (A beautifully-illustrated epic exploration of the world's snakes.)

Greene, Harry W. Tracks and Shadows: Field Biology as Art. University of California Press, 2013.

Himmelman, John. Discovering Amphibians: Frogs and Salamanders of the Northeast

James, Jamie. The Snake Charmer: A Life and Death in Pursuit of Knowledge. Hyperion, 2008.
    (An entertaining biographical adventure about Dr. Joe Slowinski, one of the leading experts on venomous snakes in the world who died of snakebite in the      Burmese wilderness.)

Kauffeld, Carl. Snakes and Snake Hunting. reprinted 1995 by Krieger Publishing Co.
   (A herping classic from the 1950's.)

Kauffeld, Carl. Snakes: The Keeper and the Kept. Krieger Publishing Company, reprinted 1995.
   (Another classic herping essential.)

Kemnitzer, John W Jr. Snake Hunting the Carolina Tin Fields.

Lannoo, Michael . Okoboji Wetlands

Marzditzia, Hugo. Are Snakes Necessary? Preston Sturges Press.1941. (An Ophiology classic that Includes a remarkable account of the extremely rare Colobrina marzditzia - the Brazilian Glass Snake, which eats flies, milk, and pigeons eggs, and is as playful as a kitten.)

Merker, Gerold and Walter. Alterna: The Gray-Banded Kingsnake
  (The highly-sought after Trans-Pecos snake, and the people who hunt them.)

Phillips, Kathryn. Tracking the Vanishing Frogs: An Ecological Mystery. St. Martin's Press, 1994.
   (Describes the beginnings of our awareness of the global amphibian crisis.)

Pianka, Eric R. The Lizard Man Speaks. University of Texas Press, 1994.

Pianka, Eric R., and Laurie J. Vitt. Lizards: Windows to the Evolution of Diversity (Organisms and Environments, 5.) University of California Press, 2003.

Quammen, David. The Flight of the Iguana: A Sidelong View of Science and Nature. Simon and Schuster, 1988.

Stebbins, Robert C. and Nathan W. Cohen. A Natural History of Amphibians. Princeton University Press, 1997.

Switak, K. H.  Adventures in Green Python Country

Filip A. Tkacyzk. Tracks & Sign of Reptiles & Amphibians: A Guide to North American Species. Stackpole Books, 2015.

Wheeler, Donald G. Tales From the Golden Age of Rattlesnake Hunting. ECO Publishing, 2001.

Williamson, Mike. Trail of the Snake

Places to Buy Herpetology and Other Natural History Books Online

Bibliomania! - a great source for all herp publications.

Zoo Book Sales

Powell's Books - This is where I hang out when I'm in Portland, and not just for the natural history books- their several-story building covers an entire city block, and it's full of books...

More Online Resources for Information about California Herps

CA dept. of Fish and Game Habitat Conservation Planning Branch - species of special concern, rare, threatened, endangered, & fully protected species.

Field Guide to Coastal Southern California Reptiles and Amphibians

Amphibiaweb - A great site from UC Berkeley which covers all of the amphibians in California along with the rest of the planet.

LivingUnderworld.org - Includes Information about all of California's amphibians.

HerpWiki - The North American Field Herping Association (N.A.F.H.A.) field guide to North American amphibians and reptiles.

HumboldtHerps.com - The Humboldt County Herpetological Society

San Diego Natural History Museum Field Guide - Reptiles and Amphibians


Amphibians and Reptiles of Orange County, California and nearby places Compiled by Peter J. Bryand, University of California, Irvine.

Amphibians and Reptiles of Kern County, California

ShastaHerps.org - Shasta County Herps

Caudata.org - The Newt and Salamander Portal

Falling apart and merging: diversification of slender salamanders (Plethodontidae: Batrachoseps) in the American West Elizabeth L. Jockusch and David B. Wake

Southwestern Field Herping Associates

Southwestern Center for Herpetological Research

Rules and Regulations Regarding California Reptiles and Amphibians

California Regulations

Federal Regulations regarding wildlife in National Parks

General Herpetological Information and Organizations

Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles

The Center for North American Herpetology

EMBL Reptile Database

American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists

Names of the Reptiles and Amphibians of North America including translations of Latin names, biographical explanations, and original description citations.

Amphibiaweb - access to information on amphibian biology and conservation from UC Berkeley.

Reptiles and Amphibians of Arizona

Amphibian Species of the World

Global Amphibian Assessment - A comprehensive status assessment of the world's amphibian species, with a searchable database.

USGS Amphibian Checklist and Identification Guide

Herp Digest - An electronic newsletter dedicated to reptile and amphibian conservation and science

Key to the tadpoles of the United States and Canada

Horned Lizards

Mexico Herpetology

Caudata.org

World Chelonian Trust

Gartersnake.info

Online Forums

To participate in or read conversations about field observations of herps in California or around the world, many illustrated with photographs, check this list of online forums.

Conservation

See our Conservation Page for links.

Information about Amphibian and Reptile Decline

See our Conservation Page for links.

Online museum herpetology collection databases

HerpNet ( A collaborative effort by institutions to establish a global network between databases of herpetological collections in natural history museums, funded by the National Science Foundation.)

Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, UC Berkeley

California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco

Herp Pet Care Information Links

For a list of sources of information about caring for pet herps, or herpetoculture, click here.

Other California Online Herp and Natural History Resources

Joe Morlan's California Birding

California Dragonflies

The Fungi of California

Butterflies and Moths of North America

California Wildlife Gardening and Horticulture tips from a CA native plant expert.

Ceres - California Biodiversity

Official California State site

Los Angeles County Natural History Museum

San Francisco Bay Area Wildlife

Bay Nature Magazine - Exploring Nature in the San Francisco Bay Area

California Frog and Toad Calls Recordings

See my List of Frog and Toad Calls on this website. I have recorded all of the species found in California except one, although not all were recorded in California.
The list includes links to the frog pages and to short videos of calling frogs. Here is a link to all of the Frog and Toad Videos on this web site, many of which include frog and toad sounds.

Carlos Davidson - Frog and Toad Calls of the Pacific Coast - Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology

Carlos Davidson - Frog and Toad Calls of the Rocky Mountains - Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology

There is a good CD that comes with this book: Lang Elliott, Carl Gerhardt, and Carlos Davidson. Frogs and Toads of North America, a Comprehensive Guide to their Identification, Behavior, and Calls. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009.

Charles M. Bogert - Sounds of North American Frogs - Smithsonian Folkways










Home Site Map About Us Identification Lists Maps Photos More Lists CA Snakes CA Lizards CA Turtles CA Salamanders CA Frogs
Contact Us Usage Resources Rattlesnakes Sounds Videos FieldHerping Yard Herps Behavior Herp Fun CA Regulations
Beyond CA All Herps


Return to the Top

 © 2000 -