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Pacific Giant Salamanders: Dicamptodontidae


The larvae of Pacific giant salamanders eat the larvae of any bottom-dwelling insects they find, but they also eat other stream-dwelling animals. Because they grow to a large size, the salamander larvae feed on larger prey as well, including small fish and the larvae of mole salamanders. Small adult Pacific giant salamanders eat land-dwelling invertebrates (in-VER-teh-brehts), or animals without backbones, which they catch with their long, fast tongue. As they grow larger, Pacific giant salamanders prey on vertebrates, or animals with backbones, such as slender salamanders, lizards, shrews, mice, and even snakes, which they seize with their strong jaws. Pacific giant salamanders travel to find food and can climb as high as 6.6 feet (2 meters) on tree trunks.


Siltation (sihl-TAY-shun) is what happens when soil is washed from land and builds up in streams and rivers. The buildup is called silt and looks and feels like sandy dirt. Siltation happens when river or stream banks do not have enough plant life on them to keep the soil in place, as when all the nearby trees are cut down, grazing livestock eat all the grass away, or when the soil is not healthy because of poor farming practices or drought.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceAmphibiansPacific Giant Salamanders: Dicamptodontidae - Physical Characteristics, Geographic Range, Diet, Behavior And Reproduction, Conservation Status, Coastal Giant Salamander (dicamptodon Tenebrosus): Species Account - HABITAT, PACIFIC GIANT SALAMANDERS AND PEO