Saving the hellbender salamander

Aquatic salamander
Hellbenders are aquatic salamanders that live in the Appalachian region.

Finger Lakes Community College will host an online talk on efforts to protect the hellbender salamander on Thursday, March 25, at 6 p.m.

Emilly Nolan, a Buffalo native who recently completed master’s degree research at Tennessee State University, will talk about the loss of hellbender habitat and options for restoring and expanding populations of the species.

To register in advance or tune in, click this link or go to the FLCC events calendar at

“Helping the Hellbender: Efforts to Save These Slimy Salamanders” is part of the Speaking of Nature Series of the FLCC Muller Field Station, an education and research facility at the south end of Honeoye Lake.

Woman at stream holding salamander
Emilly Nolan will give a talk on her research on the hellbender salamander on March 25.

Eastern Hellbenders are large, fully aquatic salamanders that are declining throughout their range in the Appalachian region. Nolan will present general information on the hellbender and describe the threats this species faces and methods to manage and conserve declining populations.

Nolan is a wildlife biologist whose work and research interests include amphibian conservation, disease ecology, and wildlife management.

Salamander conservation has also been a key focus at the Muller Field Station. Every spring, warm rains prompt spotted salamanders to migrate from hillside forests to the southern Honeoye Valley floor in search of breeding pools, ponds, and shallow depressions dotting the silver maple-ash swamp forest. To reduce roadkill as salamanders cross County Road 36, faculty, staff and students volunteer a few nights each spring to carry the salamanders across the road.