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Fossil Plethodontid Salamanders from the Latest Miocene of California

James M. Clark
Journal of Herpetology
Vol. 19, No. 1 (Mar., 1985), pp. 41-47
DOI: 10.2307/1564418
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1564418
Page Count: 7
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Fossil Plethodontid Salamanders from the Latest Miocene of California
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Abstract

Two salamanders, Aneides lugubris, and Batrachoseps sp., are reported from the latest Miocene (Hemphillian) upper Mehrten Formation of the western Sierra Nevada foothills of California. A record of Batrachoseps sp. is also reported here from the Pinole Tuff of the same age in the San Francisco Bay area of California. These are the second Tertiary records of plethodontid remains and the first from west of the Rocky Mountains. The minimum age of Aneides lugubris, and the Sierra Nevada population in particular, is established at approximately five million years. This is consistent with the estimated longevity of this species based on biochemical evidence and modifies a previous biogeographic speculation.

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