Date of Award


Degree Name

Biological Sciences


College of Science

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Thomas K. Pauley

Second Advisor

Stanley K. Sessions

Third Advisor

Jeffrey May


Green Salamanders (Aneides aeneus) are the only salamanders in West Virginia to exhibit an arboreal lifestyle. The focus of this study was to determine the cellular anatomy of the distal digit structures and how these structures may influence climbing ability. Comparative histology, comparative morphometrics, and comparative osteology of Green Salamanders, Cumberland Plateau Salamanders (Plethodon kentucki), and Slimy Salamanders (Plethodon glutinosus), were also used to determine if Cumberland Plateau Salamanders had the potential to compete with Green Salamanders for arboreal habitats. Histologically, Cumberland Plateau Salamanders had cell layer thickening similar to that of Green Salamanders. Morphometrically, Green Salamanders and Cumberland Plateau Salamanders had similar limb measurements; however Cumberland Plateau Salamanders were larger in trunk height and tail height. Osteologically, Cumberland Plateau Salamanders and Slimy Salamanders were virtually identical in carpal, tarsal, and terminal phalanx structure and arrangement.


Salamanders - West Virginia.

Salamanders - Habitat - West Virginia.

Salamanders - Anatomy.