Sunday, November 30, 2008

Doesn't "arboreal" mean "lives in trees?"

...



Robb was opening our garage door this morning, when he cried out, "Oh No! Did I crush him?" There was a little creature right under the path of our garage doors.

Now, I had been meaning to sweep out the leaves and debris that accumulate around our garage door, but had never gotten past the thinking-about-it phase of the project. It seems that this leaf litter is the doorstep to the home of Aneides lugubris, the Arboreal Salamander. We entirely failed to take any photos in the morning, before he slipped into a hole in the concrete hole of our garage. But when we returned from bike riding, he was out again. This time I managed to take a couple of Bigfoot-worthy photos before he tired of our company.

What's incredible about this little animal is that he somehow has found a way to live on the (tree-less) Southeastern Farallon Island, which is twenty-eight miles offshore from San Francisco. I'm pretty sure that this little guy -- who lacks lungs and breathes though his skin -- could not swim all the way to The Farallones. How did they get there?

(He certainly is rocking the light blue eyeshadow!)

8 comments:

Beach Gal said...

How big is he??

. . . Lisa and Robb . . . said...

Maybe six inches from nose to the end of his tail.

gollygee said...

What a fashionable little guy! :)

Anonymous said...

huh, I think I have these critters under all my flowerpots here in SF both old house & newer one.I think mine are mo0re red than blue though- different species?
well you know, Lisa how things travel. Someone brought a plant or soil to the island, or teracotta sewer pipe that had eggs or salamander in it? Gull hanging near Lake Merced ate pregnant female and viable eggs dropped with her carcass onto the island? The possibilities, while not endless, are intriguing..

Suzi

Anonymous said...

Whoa! "Arboreal" was one of my spelling words in English! Go figure. The little guy must have gotten onto some ship and got stuck on that island. Or maybe he had the help of some aquatic creature? It is a possibility. Or, I could have just been watching too many Disney movies... Again...

Bookworm NTH

Anonymous said...

Arboreal... isn't that surreal trees? Fitting for this little guy!

Bandaid

knitica said...

Ooo, he's slick and shiny!

SLW said...

Very cute! We only have one kind here in Colorado, and I have found them in the garage too... Nice story.

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