Spotted Salamander on Wet Leaves

I decided to go for yet another walk at Bull Run Regional Park yesterday, and was rewarding with this Spotted Salamander. Of all the species of salamander, this one is way, way up there on the list of ones I wanted to see. The Spotted Salamander is a mole salamander, meaning that it spends most of its life underground. One of the few times it does come above ground is during the night to hunt, and early in spring to mate in small temporary pools called vernal pools. Seeing as the mating season is already over, I figured that I wouldn't get any more chances to photograph a Spotted Salamander until next spring. While walking the trail next to a swamp, however, I saw a rotten log near the edge of the water. It looked like a good log for something to be hiding under, but I never expected to find a gorgeous, huge, Spotted Salamander underneath it. It was my lucky day!

Spotted Salamander Sitting on Wet Leaves, Bull Run Regional Park, Virginia, United States.