The species lists below include all of the amphibians in California broken down by protected status. Species with multiple designations are listed more than once, and will appear in each category that is suitable. However, species with multiple designations will have a “-” after the latin name and a series of letters that describes all of the designations. The “key” is as follows:

FE = Federal Endangered         FT = Federal Threatened

SE = State Endangered              ST = State Threatened

FP = Fully Protected                   SSC = California Species of Special Concern

Taxonomic References:

Federal Listed Amphibians

California has a total of 9 federally listed amphibians. (11 species are listed below because it includes 3 Distinct Population Segments (DPSs) of California tiger salamander and 2 DPSs of Mountain yellow-legged frog)

Federal Endangered Amphibians (6 total species and 2 DPSs)

Federal Threatened Amphibians (4 total species)

State Listed Amphibians

California has a total of 12 state listed amphibians, and five of those species are also federally listed species.

State Endangered Amphibians (3 total species)

State Threatened Amphibians (9 total species)

Fully Protected Amphibians

(Click here to learn more about Fully Protected Species)

Species of Special Concern

There are 21 amphibians in California that are Species of Special Concern (4 of them are also federally listed species).

A Species of Special Concern (SSC) is a species, subspecies, or distinct population of an animal* native to California that currently satisfies one or more of the following (not necessarily mutually exclusive) criteria**:

  • is extirpated from the State or, in the case of birds, is extirpated in its primary season or breeding role;
  • is listed as Federally-, but not State-, threatened or endangered; meets the State definition of threatened or endangered but has not formally been listed;
  • is experiencing, or formerly experienced, serious (noncyclical) population declines or range retractions (not reversed) that, if continued or resumed, could qualify it for State threatened or endangered status;
  • has naturally small populations exhibiting high susceptibility to risk from any factor(s), that if realized, could lead to declines that would qualify it for State threatened or endangered status.

*for the purposes of this discussion, “animal” means fish, amphibian, reptile, bird and mammal

**criteria for fishes are similar except that Federally listed taxa are not defined as SSCs

  • Southern long-toed salamander (Ambystoma macrodactylum sigillatum)
  • California giant salamander (Dicamptodon ensatus)
  • Southern torrent salamander (Rhyacotriton variegatus)
  • Red-bellied newt (Taricha rivularis)
  • Coast Range newt (Taricha torosa)  [Monterey Co. & south only]
  • Santa Cruz black salamander (Aneides niger)
  • Inyo Mountains slender salamander (Batrachoseps campi)
  • Lesser slender salamander (Batrachoseps minor)
  • Relictual slender salamander (Batrachoseps relictus)
  • Couch’s spadefoot (Scaphiopus couchii)
  • Western spadefoot (Spea hammondii)
  • Arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus) – FE, SSC
  • Yosemite toad (Anaxyrus canorus) – FT, SSC
  • Sonoran desert toad (Incilius alvarius)
  • Northern leopard frog (Lithobates pipiens) [Native populations only]
  • Lowland leopard frog (Lithobates yavapaiensis)
  • Northern red-legged frog (Rana aurora)
  • Foothill yellow-legged frog (Rana boylii)
  • Cascades frog (Rana cascadae)
  • California red-legged frog (Rana draytonii) – FT, SSC
  • Oregon spotted frog (Rana pretiosa) – FT, SSC

CDFW Watchlist Amphibians

  • Yellow-blotched salamander (Ensatina eschscholtzii croceator)
  • Large-blotched salamander (Ensatina klauberi)
  • Mount Lyell salamander (Hydromantes platycephalus)
  • Del Norte salamander (Plethodon elongatus)

All Amphibians of California

There are 74 amphibians that occur in California, and 7 of those species are introduced to California (67 are natives). A total of 3 of those species occur in extremely limited distribution.

(Source: CDFW here)

I – species Introduced to California, non-native

* – extremely limited distribution in California

Salamanders (Caudata)

  • Mole Salamanders and Relatives (Ambystomatidae)
    • Long-toed Salamander (Ambystoma macrodactylum)
    • Western Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium)
    • California Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma californiense) – I
    • Northwestern Salamander (Ambystoma gracile)
    • California Giant Salamander (Dicamptodon ensatus)
    • Coastal Giant Salamander (Dicamptodon tenebrosus)
  • Torrent Salamanders (Rhyacotritonidae)
    • Southern Torrent Salamander (Rhyacotriton variegatus)
  • Newts (Salamandridae)
    • California Newt (Taricha torosa)
    • Red-bellied Newt (Taricha rivularis)
    • Rough-skinned Newt (Taricha granulosa)
    • Sierra Newt (Taricha sierrae)
  • Lungless Salamanders (Plethodontidae)
    • Mount Lyell Salamander (Hydromantes platycephalus)
    • Black-bellied Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps nigriventris)
    • Channel Islands Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps pacificus)
    • San Gabriel Mtns Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps gabrieli)
    • Gabilan Mtns Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps gavilanensis)
    • Santa Lucia Mtns Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps luciae)
    • Lesser Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps minor)
    • San Simeon Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps incognitus)
    • Sequoia Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps kawia)
    • Relictual Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps relictus)
    • Greenhorn Mtns Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps altasierrae)
    • Fairview Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps bramei)
    • California Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps attenuatus)
    • Shasta Salamander (Hydromantes shastae)
    • Kern Canyon Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps simatus)
    • Limestone Salamander (Hydromantes brunus)
    • Gregarious Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps gregarius)
    • Hell Hollow Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps diabolicus)
    • Kings River Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps regius)
    • Scott Bar Salamander (Plethodon asupak)
    • Southern California Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps major)
    • Wandering Salamander (Aneides vagrans)
    • Tehachapi Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps stebbinsi)
    • Dunn’s Salamander (Plethodon dunni)
    • Del Norte Salamander (Plethodon elongatus)
    • Siskiyou Mtns Salamander (Plethodon stormi)
    • Black Salamander (Aneides flavipunctatus)
    • Clouded Salamander (Aneides ferreus)
    • Arboreal Salamander (Aneides lugubris)
    • Ensatina (Ensatina eschscholtzii)
    • Kern Plateau Slender Salamander (Batrachoseps robustus)
    • Inyo Mtns Salamander (Batrachoseps campi)

Frogs (Anura)

  • Tail-wagging Frogs (Leiopelmatidae)
    • Coastal Tailed Frog (Ascaphus truei)
  • North American Spadefoots (Scaphiopodidae)
    • Great Basin Spadefoot (Spea intermontana)
    • Couch’s Spadefoot (Scaphiopus couchii)
    • Western Spadefoot (Spea hammondii)
  • True Toads (Bufonidae)
  • Neotropical Thin-toed Frogs (Leptodactylidae)
    • Coqui (Eleutherodactylus coqui) – I,*
  • Treefrogs (Hylidae)
    • California Treefrog (Pseudacris cadaverina)
    • Pacific Treefrog (Pseudacris regilla)
    • Baja California Treefrog (Pseudacris hypochondriaca)
    • Sierran Treefrog (Pseudacris sierra)
  • True Frogs (Ranidae)