Mudpuppy is a type of salamander that lives in water. It is also referred to as a water dog. Mudpuppy is found in Central Canada, the Midwest of America, Mississippi, Georgia, and Carolina. It spends its entire life in bodies of water such as lakes, streams, and muddy puddles. Water pollution and habitat destruction pose a threat to Mudpuppy. Mudpuppy can also get caught in fishing nets by accident. Except for a minor decline in the number of mudpuppies in some populations, they are not listed as endangered.
Mudpuppy is an enormous salamander. Adult mudpuppies can grow to be 8 to 13 inches long.
Mudpuppy bodies are typically grey, brownish-grey, or rust-brown in color, with bluish or grey spots.
The underside of the body is grey and covered in dark spots.
The mudpuppy’s body is covered in slime for protection. Mudpuppy has a flat head, small eyes, and a big mouth. It has a thick body and short legs with clawless toes. Mudpuppy has a long tail.
Mudpuppy got its name because it makes loud squeaks that sound like a dog barking.
Because it spends its entire life in the water, Mudpuppy breathes through its gills. Gills are easily identified by their distinctive red color and bushy appearance. They can be found on both sides of the neck.
Mudpuppy’s temperature does not remain constant. Its body temperature is affected by the temperature of its surroundings.
These animals are referred to as cold-blooded.
Mudpuppy, unlike other salamanders, does not have poison in its skin that can be used to ward off predators.
Instead, mudpuppy must seek refuge in the event of danger.
Birds, large fish, and snakes are the main mudpuppy predators.
Mudpuppy eats meat (meat-eaters). It feeds on various types of water invertebrates (crayfish, snails, and worms), other salamanders, and water organism eggs.
Mudpuppy’s vision is underdeveloped. It can detect prey by using its highly developed sense of smell.
Mudpuppies that live in murky, dark waters are active all day. Mudpuppies that live in clear water are most active at night and hide during the day in aquatic vegetation or between rocks.
Mudpuppies can dive to depths of up to 120 feet. They are operational throughout the year (they do not hibernate).
The mating season occurs late in the autumn and early in the winter. Males engage in a special dancing ritual prior to the release of sperm packages. Females gather sperm packages and lay between 18 and 180 eggs in underwater burrows.
Unlike other salamanders, the female mudpuppy cares for the eggs until they hatch. Depending on the temperature of the water, it usually takes between one and two months. At the age of five, young mudpuppies will reach adulthood.
In the wild, the average lifespan of a mudpuppy is 11 years.