Ancient, Slippery, Enormous 'Snot Otters': Looking for Hellbender Salamanders
Photo: Rebecca jacobson/pbs newshour
Threatened and Endangered
In 2011, Ozark hellbenders were listed as endangered. The salamanders also appear to be declining in parts of Illinois, Indiana and Ohio.
Hellbenders are threatened by siltation, where sediment from land development washes into the stream and chokes the salamanders. They are also threatened by habitat loss, poaching and pollution.
But there is hope. Some pockets of eastern hellbenders are surviving, even thriving, in places that biologists previous thought uninhabited.
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