Necturus maculosus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Necturus maculosus
Species Authority: (Rafinesque, 1818)
Common Name(s):
English Mudpuppy
Sirena maculosa Rafinesque, 1818
Taxonomic Notes: This species is genetically most closely related to Necturus beyeri and N. alabamensis (Guttman et al. 1990). Some authors have included in this species certain populations in the Black Warrior River drainage; those populations apparently comprise two species, N. alabamensis and an undescribed species (see Guttman et al. 1990). The subspecies N.m. louisianensis was proposed as a distinct species by Collins (1991, 1997), but supporting data are lacking. Petranka (1998) and Crother et al. (2000) treated louisianensis as a subspecies. See Maxson et al. (1988) for information on Necturus phylogeny based on albumin analysis.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2004
Date Assessed: 2004-04-30
Assessor(s): Geoffrey Hammerson
Reviewer(s): Global Amphibian Assessment Coordinating Team (Simon Stuart, Janice Chanson, Neil Cox and Bruce Young)
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, tolerance of a degree of habitat modification, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species can be found in North America from southern Manitoba to southern Quebec, south to Oklahoma, northern Louisiana, northern Mississippi, northern Alabama, and northern Georgia (Conant and Collins 1991). It is absent from Coastal Plain. Introduced in New England Rivers. See Cochran (1991) for information on distribution in the north-central U.S. in relation to postglacial events.
Canada; United States
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Total adult population size is unknown but surely exceeds 10,000. It is still abundant in many northern lakes and rivers (Petranka 1998).
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It can be found in permanent lakes, ponds, impoundments, streams, and rivers of all sorts. It is a bottom dweller that is often under rock, debris, bank overhang, etc., during daylight. Animals may move into slack water shallows in late fall and early winter. Eggs are attached to undersides of objects in water. Animals may move upstream to spawn (Green and Pauley 1987). It apparently tolerates some water pollution and siltation.
Systems: Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Despite widespread pollution and siltation of streams in eastern North America, this species appears to be in minimal need of protection (Petranka 1998).

Citation: Geoffrey Hammerson 2004. Necturus maculosus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <>. Downloaded on 28 March 2015.
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