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Greater Siren

(Siren lacertina)


Category: Amphibians



These eel-like amphibians are one of the largest amphibians in North America. They are aquatic and can be found in streams, swamps, lakes, and rivers. Their front legs are so small that they can be hidden in their gills. They are nocturnal and mostly carnivorous, and like sharks, use a lateral line sense organ to detect prey.

Learn more about the Greater Siren at Wikipedia and Reptiles Magazine.


Data & Facts

Scientific Classification
Kingdom - Animalia
Phylum - Chordata
Class - Amphibia
Order - Caudata
Family - Sirenidae
Genus - Siren
Species - S. lacertina

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Interesting Animal Facts

An Ample Amphibian

Before reptiles and mammals appeared to challenge amphibian supremacy on the land, amphibians were much larger. But while they have shrunk in size over the last 315 million years, the Chinese Giant Salamander never got the memo: at up to 5.9 feet in length and 66lbs, this amphibian is longer than your dog, and probably weighs at least as much! Compare that to Paedophryne amanuensis, the world’s smallest frog (and smallest vertebrate) who is the size of a house fly! Due to habitat loss, environmental changes, and over-hunting/collecting, the Chinese giant Salamander is critically endangered, though conservation efforts to save it are underway today.

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