Aneides species ID question

pete

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I recently moved not far from my old apartment to a nice cottage in Menlo Park, CA with a nice garden. This weekend I flipped a few stones in the garden and found two Aneides. The were both juveniles and mostly black. Although, when look at the photos that I took of the lighter-colored salamander, it has some reds on the side. However, my current camera also tends to falsely emphasize reds my images.

They were darker than any lugubris that I've ever seen so far. However, I don't think I'm far enough south to be in the Santa Cruz flavipunctatus region. Possibly, I'm in the northern most extreme of its region.

So I was looking for any Aneides expert (Russ...) to give me an opinion as to what they are. Thanks.
 

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Too far north. I'm south of San Francisco and north of Santa Cruz.
 
You are within range of niger, and the head shape in the second pic is niger/flavish, but I'm going to go with lugubris based of the color and speckling. Are all three pics the same animal?
 
All three of the original photos are of the same animal. The other guy was a little smaller and more fussy for photographing. Attached is the only photo I got that is worth showing.... Perhaps, I'll have to do some more searching and see if I can find an adult.

Thanks for the opinion.
 

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Update

Since initially posted it got too dry and I never saw any more caudates in the garden. However, it's been quite cool and wet lately, so I grabbed my camera, flipped a few pots, stones, and tacky lawn ornament and started taking pictures. It turns out that the yard is a salamander haven. I found about 11 adult Aneides and too many Batrachoseps to count with little effort. I'm guessing that it's lugubris, but they're a bit smaller and darker from the lugubris that I used to catch around Berkeley. Whatever, it was a fun afternoon realizing my cottage is guarded by an army of caudates. I tried not to disturb them too much.
 

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Yes, they're lugubris. I think I've crossed the line between envy and jealousy, LOL! That's beats keeping them in shoe-boxes any day.
 
definitely Aneides lugubris, they live in the woodpiles in our garden as well.
 
Gorgeous! Nice to see our native species thrive this way! :smile:
 
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