A Guide to the Amphibians
and Reptiles of California

New Additions in 2019


observation link

These are some of the new pictures, sounds, and video that I have added to the site in 2019.
Most of these come from other photographers who I want to thank. I'm too lazy to list everything that I add myself.
Pictures and video are listed under the month when I added them, not necessarily when they were taken or donated.

The links lead to pages which include thumbnails and other links to the new content. You will have to search the page to find them, but most of them are usually put at the bottom of the gallery of thumbnails of the featured animal.
The most recent additions to the site are on top of the list found below.
The list of additions to the site in 2018 can be seen here


Tadd Kraft contributed pictures of a Western Black-headed Snake from coastal Orange County.

I have updated all of the new 2019 status listings for threatened and endangered species. There were very few changes, but I just read that CDFW has given 5 populations of the Foothill Yellow-legged Frog Endangered and Threatened protections. (I describe the populations in more depth in the Conservation Status section of the R. boylii page.) This seems to be the trend - to split a species into population groups then list each group differently. The CDFW has been doing that in their collecting regulations for a few years.

Grayson Lloyd contributed pictures of a California Tiger Salamander from Yolo County, an area of the state previously not represented in my pictures.

Ivan Vershynin contributed pictures of an Arboreal Salamander and a Black-bellied Slender Salamander from Coastal Southern California.

Spencer Riffle contributed pictures of Dunn's and Siskiyou Mountains Salamanders from California as well as the first pictures of the Shasta Salamander I have, after the species was split into three. Now all I need is the third one...

Noah Morales contributed pictures of a Mountain Gartersnake found near Stockton, which is farther south in the valley than I knew they occured.


Joseph Cahill contributed pictures of a California Treefrog from Ventura County.

Jacob Lloyd Davies contributed pictures of an aberrantly-pigmented white and black Two-striped Gartersnake from Riverside County.

Neil Keung contributed pictures of Sierra Nevada Yellow-legged Frogs inhabiting fast-flowing creeks in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Cameron Ruland contributed pictures of an interesting yellow and red Red-spotted Toad that's missing some pigment.

Spencer Riffle contributed lots of great pics: Painted Ensatina, Tailed Frog (tadpoles and an adult male's nuptial pads), and Sierra Nevada Yellow-legged Frogs.


Ivan Vershynin contributed pictures of a California Striped Racer and some Red Diamond Rattlesnakes from Orange County.

Huck Triggs contributed pictures from the Santa Monica Mountains - a Coast Mountain Kingsnake and a California Red-legged Frog.

Tadd Kraft contributed pictures of two juvenile Blainville's Horned Lizards from Orange County and a wild Green Iguana from Orange County.


Jeff Nordland contributed pictures of a bright yellow hatchling Peninsula Banded Gecko and a California Striped Racer found in a place I didn't know they existed - an Imperial County desert oasis.

Jim Tracy contributed pictures of a number of gartersnakes - San Francisco, Coast, and California Red-sided.

Will Kohn photographed two melanistic Red-eared Sliders during a San Diego County Pond Turtle survey and contributed several pictures.

Jack Hankin photographed a Coast Gartersnake killing a small rat on a trail in Pacifica and contributed some pictures.

An anonymous contributor let me use some pictures of a Moorish Gecko found in Spring Valley, including some nice pictures of the lizard hanging onto glass.

A couple of odd Ensatinas from the Greenhorn Mountains contributed by Ryan Sikola.

Yuval Helfman contributed a picture of two Northern Pacific Rattlesnakes in what I assume is a combat dance. It seems weird to see this outside the breeding season, but apparently it's not that uncommon.

Cait Hutnik contributed several pictures from her website Light of Morn - Northwestern Pond Turtles with unusual algae on their shells, California Tiger Salamanders, Ensatinas, and a very unusual light-skinned blotched California Newt.


Ryan Sikola contributed a bunch of pictures - a Relictual Slender Salamander from it's small isolated range on Breckenridge Mouintain, and a San Diego Alligator Lizard and a Sierra Alligator Lizard from the mountain, California Mountain Kingsnakes, Coast Mountain Kingsnakes, and a Monterey Ring-necked Snake.

Keith Condon contributed pictures of a gravid Desert Banded Gecko from the northernmost part of its range in California in Mono County, and a Woodland (San Diego) Alligator Lizard from the east side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in Inyo County.

Ray Ortiz of the LA County Fire Dept. sent me pictures of a beautiful patternless Southern Pacific Rattlesnake with a wide dark stripe that firefighter paramedic Chris Sperber and firefighter specialist Daniel Craig caught in Newhall after someone called the fire department.

Mandy Colombo Murphy contributed pictures of snakes she trapped during a permitted study in the Ohlone Regional Wilderness - a California Mountain Kingsnake, a Western Black-headed Snake, an Alameda Striped Racer, and a California Nightsnake.

Ivan Vershynin contributed pics of a California Striped Racer in Orange County.

Rosey Rosenke photographed a beautiful bright orange Coast Range Fence Lizard in Marin County and let me use her pictures. I've never seen one this color.

A new study has been published following up on years of research that splits the species Aneides flavipunctatus into four full species. I have added the new names and information to the range map I made years ago showing the four separate forms and to the pages where I had already split up the new species, but I have not yet made four complete pages because I want to wait until others are using the new taxonomy.

Rick Wachs contributed pictures of a Northern Pacific Rattlesnake he saw at 11,000 ft. elevation in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Chris DeGroof contributed pictures of Southern Mountain Yellow-legged Frog Tadpoles, Green Anoles, a California Kingsnake eating a Southern Pacific Rattlesnake, a Mountain Gartersnake from the San Bernardino Mountains, an unusually-pigmented Northern Mohave Rattlesnake, and an unusually spotted Two-striped Gartersnake.

Yuval Helfman contributed a picture of an interestingly patterned California Whiptail.

Deborah LaFleur contributed a picture of a Common Sharp-tailed Snake from Marin County.


Naomi Pitcairn discovered Baja California Treefrogs inhabiting a tar pit in Ventura County and contributed pictures to illustrate the frogs and the location.

Joel A. Germond contributed pictures of Sierran Treefrogs and California Red-legged Frogs from San Luis Obispo County.

David Hacker found a new location for Foothill Yellow-legged Frogs in Monterey County and contributed some pictures of an adult and some tadpoles.

Richard Porter contributed a great series of pictures of a Giant Gartersnake eating an American Bullfrog.

Nancy Asquith contributed a picture of a California Striped Racer with its head elevated high off the ground not unlike a cobra.


Ivan Vershynin contributed pictures of adult and a juvenile Southwestern Threadsnakes from Orange County.

Agata Labianca sent in a picture of a snake for me to identify that has been seen in the same spot in LA county for a few weeks that looks like a rattlesnake but has no rattle. And that's exactly what it is, a Southern Pacific Rattlesnake with the end of its tail missing.

Mark Russell contributed a picture of a California Kingsnake he found in his yard eating a San Bernardino Ring-necked Snake.

Mike Pecora sent in two pictures of a Desert Patch-nosed Snake eating a rodent in the middle of a road.

Dave Beller contributed a couple of pictures of a California Whiptail with a very long tail in San Luis Obispo County.

Richard Porter contributed pictures of some Delta morph California Kingsnakes, an old dark Rubber Boa, an unusually pigmented Sierra Nevada Ensatina, a California Nightsnake with violet coloring on the underside, and iridscence on the underside of a California Glossy Snake.

Lilith Schauer contributed pictures of a very unusual Forest Alligator Lizard - it's almost completely gray.

Megan Wehrenberg and Johan Mulski contributed pictures of a Cape Horned Lizard from Baja California Sur that show just how much more enlarged the horns of this species are compared to those of Blainville's Horned Lizard, which were once thought to be the same species.

An anonymous contributor let me use a picture of a San Lucan Speckled Rattlesnake he found at his house in Baja California Sur.

Jim Brock contributed pictures of a Desert Spiny Lizard with a red head.

Richard Porter contributed a bunch of great stuff: Panamint Alligator Lizard, Great Basin Spadefoot, California Tiger Salamander larvae during their first trip out of the water, a striped Pacific Gophersnake, and another Pacific Gophersnake hanging off a bridge hunting for food at some swallow's nests stuck to the underside of the bridge.

Gene Sederholm contributed pictures of a nice little California Mountain Kingsnake he found in Dunsmuir.


Todd Campbell-Crow contributed a picture of a tiny juvenile Northern Pacific Rattlesnake with a yellow button.

Mike Ryan contributed pictures of Common Chuckwallas and a Great Basin Collared Lizard.

Laura Baker contributed some pictures of Shasta Alligator Lizards courting in Sonoma County.

Ryan Brooks contributed some great diagnostic pictures of Brahminy Blindsnakes he found in San Diego County.

An anonymous donor contributed pictures of a San Diego Gophersnake on Santa Catalina Island.

Julia Ggem sent in pictures of a Forest Alligator Lizard with a lot of ticks.

Joel A. Germond contributed pictures of a Southwestern Pond Turtle and a San Diegan Tiger Whiptail eating a Potato Bug, and two very colorful male Coast Range Fence Lizards fighting, and a female Coast Range Fence Lizard.

Brett Badeaux contributed pictures of a pair of Arroyo Toads in amplexus. The female is enormous and loaded with eggs.

Mary Yan contributed pictures of a Yellow-eyed Ensatina and a bright orange California Newt that might be leucistic.

Stan Budz sent in a video of two male Great Basin Fence Lizards fighting.

Jimmy and Kim Rowe contributed a picture of a pair of mating California Kingsnakes they found in their backyard.

Ryan Sikola contributed a picture of a Lesser Slender Salamander, too. It's nice to get more of these hard to identify salamanders. The species of both has been confirmed by a herpetologist who lives in the area and has seen enough of them to know what he's talking about. Unlike myself...

Spencer Williams contributed pictures of a Lesser Slender Salamander, Channel Island Slender Salamanders, some mating Red Diamond Rattlesnakes, and some great habitat pictures.

Tadd Kraft contributed pictures of a bunch of herps from Orange County - Woodland Alligator Lizard, Arboreal Salamander, California Treefrog, California Newts, and Two-striped Gartersnakes.

Joel A. Germond contributed pictures of an SLO county California Whiptail with a cool pattern on the back.

Grayson Sandy contributed a short video of a California Tiger Salamander larvae cannibalizing another larva.

Chris Bronny contributed a picture of a couple dozen California Tiger Salamander larvae stranded in the dregs of a stock pond.


James McFadden contributed a picture of an adult Southern Pacific Rattlesnake with 12 + rattles.

Brett Badeaux contributed pictures of juvenile Southern Pacific and Southwestern Speckled Rattlesnakes.

Ivan Vershynin contributed pictures of a light brown and yellow banded California Kingsnake from Irvine.

Gary Sopata found a San Diego Gophersnake crawling up the outside stucco wall of his house and sent me a picture.

Sasha Robinson observed and photographed a Red Diamond Rattlesnake drinking water in a creek in the San Diego County desert and kindly sent me some pictures to use here.

Sarah Ainsworth contributed a picture of a bright orange and yellow Western Side-blotched Lizard from the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

Brock Dolman contributed pictures of a Common House Gecko and a California Kingsnake from Baja California Sur.


Mark Gary contributed photos of Large-blotched Ensatina and Monterey Ensatina from San Diego County.

Ivan Vershynin sent in a picture of an odd aberrant morph California Kingsnake from Orange County.
I've added two new subspecies of banded gecko that I didn't have previously - Utah Banded Gecko, from Zachary Cava, and San Lucan Banded Gecko, from Barry Mastro.

I have copied the new California fishing regulations pertaining to reptiles and amphibians. There are a lot of changes to the common and Latin names. It looks like they have reverted to the older names used on the 2016 list, ignoring the new names used in 2017 and 2018.

Zachary Cava contributed pictures of a shrike-impaled Long-tailed Brus Lizard, some Woodhouse's Toad eggs and tadpoles, a Mohave Fringe-toed Lizard, and a Texas Spiny Softshell.

Grayson Sandy sent in pictures of a California Tiger Salamander breeding pond and a huge mass of eggs laid together on a single stalk of vegetation.

Adam Clause sent in pictures of some Western Spadefoots from Ventura County. With all the rain this year, it's shaping up to be a good year for breeding amphibians.


Richard L. P. Custer let me use a picture of an Arboreal Salamander he observed in Mendocino County. This is the first picture I have of a wild arboreal from the that county. They're either rare up the north coast, or maybe because there aren't as many people up there, they just aren't seen as much as they are in other places.

Noah Morales contributed some salamander pics from the Sierra Nevada foothills - Sierra Newt, and Limestone Salamander.

When I saw a picture in Herp Review last June of a crazy looking Valley Gartersnake found in the Sacramento Valley, I couldn't believe it. Now Alex Fulton with the U.S.G.S. has sent me even more pictures of the snake to use on the site. It doesn't look like any genetically aberrant form I can think of. It has pale green and yellow coloring and a wash of rusty red on the sides. Crazier still is that they found others in the same area, including one found a year earlier which is also shown on the page.

Chris Rombough observed hundreds of Rough-skinned Newts on a road on a rainy night in Oregon and took pictures of a few that were eating earthworms. I don't know why earthworms come out onto wet roads and sidewalks, but obviously the newts did so to take advantage of the worm buffet.


John Buckman sent in some pictures of the dark and striped form of California Lyresnake found in the Pisgah lava flow that I had read about in Robert Stebbins' 2003 field guide, but until now, over 15 years later, I had never seen in person or in pictures.

Grayson Sandy sent in some pics of Sierra Treefrog eggs and breeding habitat.

Chris Rombough contributed pictures and video of a water strider in a pond in Oregon eating an Oregon Spotted Frog hatchling tadpole. I had no idea striders ate tadpoles.

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