A small, slender salamander with a broad head and distinct neck, moderately long limbs and well formed digits with expanded toe tips and subterminal pads. This species has dark, blackish body coloration with a lighter, brownish dorsal band. The band may be obscure and is usually not prominent; ending at a dark spot which marks the tip of an inverted triangle that starts near the eyes. The band may also continue to the head. Males lack mental hedonic glands, and have 18-19 costal grooves between the limbs, while females have between 18-20. There is both lateral and ventral white spotting, with spotting more numerous laterally. Ventral surfaces are gray, and lighter than lateral ground color. There is no basal tail constriction, and the long cylindrical tail often shows evidence of regeneration (description from Jockusch et al 1998).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: United States
U.S. state distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: California
This species is known only from the drainage of the Kaweah River system from low elevations (below 500 m) to relatively high elevations (2200 m) in Tulare County, California. At higher elevations the species occurs in mixed coniferous forest, and at lower elevations is found in relatively protected, tree shaded habitat (from Jockusch et al. 1998).
Previously being assigned to Batrachoseps pacificus relictus, this species was recently defined as a distinct and new species. Batrachoseps kawia, occurs in sympatry with B. grearius in the same type locality and both occur throughout the drainage of the Kaweah River system. At high elevation, in Tulare County, B. kawia occur with B. reclictus, but no case of sympatry has been identified. These two species are sister taxa, and display unusual elevational range. Etymology: The name kawia is derived from the name of the Native Americans who inhabited the Kaweah River system region (from Jockusch et al. 1998) .
See another account at californiaherps.com.
Jockusch, E. L., Wake, D. B. and Yanev, K. P. (1998). ''New species of slender salamanders, Batrachoseps (Amphibia: Plethodontidae), from the Sierra Nevada of California.'' Contributions in Science, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, (472), 1-17.
Originally submitted by: Amy Jess and David B. Wake (first posted 1999-04-12)
Edited by: David B. Wake (2021-03-17)
Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2021 Batrachoseps kawia: Sequoia Slender Salamander <https://amphibiaweb.org/species/5283> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Jan 30, 2023.
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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2023. <https://amphibiaweb.org> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 30 Jan 2023.
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