CaliforniaHerps.com

A Guide to the Amphibians
and Reptiles of California


Reptiles and Amphibians Found on California Islands





Channel Islands - click map for a larger version


Bay Area Islands-click map to see Farallon/Año Nuevo Islands



observation link


  Channel Islands San Francisco Bay Islands Other Islands
Salamanders Santa
Catalina
San 
Clemente
San
Nicolas
Santa
Barbara
Anacapa Santa
Cruz
Santa
Rosa
San
Miguel
Alcatraz Angel
Island
Brooks East Marin West
Marin
Red Rock Yerba Buena Año Nuevo S. & SE
Farallon
Arboreal
Salamander
X
#20
                X X     X   X X
CA Slender
Salamander
                X X X ?
#1
X X X    
Channel Island
Slender Sal.
        X X X X                  
Black-bellied
Slender Sal.
          X                      
GardenSlender
Salamander
X                                
Yellow-eyed Ensatina                   ?
#12
             
Frogs Santa
Catalina
San 
Clemente
San
Nicolas
Santa
Barbara
Anacapa Santa
Cruz
Santa
Rosa
San
Miguel
Alcatraz Angel
Island
Brooks East Marin West
Marin
Red Rock Yerba Buena Año Nuevo S. & SE
Farallon
Baja California
Treefrog
X         X X                    
Sierran
Treefrog
                    ?
#2
           
California Red-
legged Frog
          X
#3
?
#4
                   
American
Bullfrog
X
#5
                               
Northern
Leopard Frog
?
#6
                               
Snakes Santa
Catalina
San 
Clemente
San
Nicolas
Santa
Barbara
Anacapa Santa
Cruz
Santa
Rosa
San
Miguel
Alcatraz Angel
Island
Brooks East Marin West
Marin
Red Rock Yerba Buena Año Nuevo S. & SE
Farallon
California
Kingsnake
X                                
Northern
Rubber Boa
                  ?
#7
             
San B. Ring-
necked Snake
X                                
Pacific
Gopher Snake
                  ?
#8
             
San Diego
Gopher Snake
X                                
Santa Cruz Is.
Gophersnake
          X X ?
#9
                 
So. Pacific
Rattlesnake
X         ?
#10
                     
Two-striped
Gartersnake
X
#17
                               
Coast
Gartersnake
                  X X       X    
West. Yellow-
bellied Racer
          X
#19
      X              
San Diego
Night Snake
          X
#11
                     
CA Mountain
Kingsnake
?
#15
                               
Lizards Santa
Catalina
San 
Clemente
San
Nicolas
Santa
Barbara
Anacapa Santa
Cruz
Santa
Rosa
San
Miguel
Alcatraz Angel
Island
Brooks East Marin West
Marin
Red Rock Yerba Buena Año Nuevo S. & SE
Farallon
CA Alligator
Lizard
        X X X X   X              
San Diego
Alligator Lizard
X X
#21
X
#18
                           
San Francisco
Alligator Lizard
                  X X       X X  
Coast Range
Fence Lizard
                  X   ?
#13
         
Island Fence
Lizard
          X X X                  
San Clemente
Nignt Lizard
  X   X                          
San Nicolas
Night Lizard
    X                            
Skilton's
Skink
X                                
Western Side blotched Liz. X X X   X X                      
Desert
Night Lizard
?
#16
                               
Turtles Santa
Catalina
San 
Clemente
San
Nicolas
Santa
Barbara
Anacapa Santa
Cruz
Santa
Rosa
San
Miguel
Alcatraz Angel
Island
Brooks East Marin West
Marin
Red Rock Yerba Buena Año Nuevo S. & SE
Farallon
Pacific
Pond Turtle
                    X
#14
           


Notes
X Indicates that there is at east one museum record and specimen collected from the island.

In the instances where I have not yet found a record, that does not necessarily mean that one does not exist, just that my searches have failed to find one.
#1
I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the California Slender Salamander on East Marin island. It is listed as common on the Marin Islands in Natural History of the Islands of California. *
#2 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Sierran Treefrog on Brooks Island. Natural History of the Islands of California * states that it has been found there but may not be reproducing.
#3 Three museum specimens of California Red-legged Frogs were collected from Santa Cruz Island in 1919, but the species is probably no longer present on the island.
#4 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the California Red-legged Frog on Santa Rosa island. It is listed as "extirpated (?)" on the island in Schoenherr 2003* and Stebbins 2003** shows it on the island in the range map for the species.
#5 Introduced. I have not found any museum records to confirm the presence of this species on the island.

In a 2005 survey, Backlin et. al.*** state "The introduced bullfrog appears to be abundant in most of the reservoirs across the island (John Floberg, personal communication). All large standing water on the island should be surveyed for bullfrogs to better understand their current distribution across the island, at which time a bullfrog eradication plan should be developed and implemented to remove or reduce this threat to the native herpetofauna."
#6 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Northern Leopard Frog on Santa Catalina island. It is listed as "Introduced (not established)" on the island inSchoenherr 2003*. Stebbins and McGinnis 2012**** mention its presence.

In a 2005 survey, Backlin et. al.*** state "The leopard frog (Rana sp.) is an introduced frog that has been reported from 1.5 km east of Isthmus Cove (Rorabaugh et al., 2002) most likely from Summit Reservoir on Santa Catalina Island. It is know from a single specimen and is unclear if other leopard frogs currently inhabit the island. This frog’s presence would be the result of a released pet as there are no dispersal routes for this animal to colonize naturally on the island. The results of this frog establishing on the island would be similar to that of the bullfrog. This frog is a voracious predator and could aid in the decline of any native aquatic animals."
#7 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Northern Rubber Boa on Angel island. It is listed as present on the island in Schoenherr 2003*
#8 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Pacific Gophersnake on Angel island. It is listed as present on the island in Schoenherr 2003* and there appears to be suitable habitat and plenty of food for the species.
#9 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Santa Cruz Island Gophersnake on San Miguel island. It is listed as present on the island in Schoenherr 2003* from an old unverified record.
#10 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Southern Pacific Rattlesnake on Santa Cruz island. It is listed as present on the island in Stebbins 2003 **.
#11 This snake is known to inhabit Santa Cruz Island from specimens collected in 1939, but the current status of the species on the island is unclear.
#12 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of Ensatina on Angel island. Schoenherr 2003* mentions that there is an unverified report of the species from the island.
#13 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Coast Range Fence Lizard on East Marin island. It is listed as common on the island in Schoenherr 2003*.
#14 There is one record for a Pond Turtle from Brooks Island, and it is probably only a waif that was not established on the island. It is possible that it was washed into the bay in a storm and landed on the island. Stebbins 2003** also shows a dot on his range map showing the presence of this species on one of the northern Channel Islands, but there is no comment in the range description of the text about it.
#15 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the California Mountain Kingsnake on Santa Catalina island. It is listed from an "old record" in Schoenherr 2003*.

In a 2005 survey, Backlin et. al.*** state that "The California mountain kingsnake (Lampropeltis zonata) has been reported a few times from the island. C. F. Holder (1910) first reported it on the island between Little Harbor and the Isthmus and described it as “... a beautiful coral snake with alternate rings of red and black”. Most recently a photograph was taken by Scott Panzer of an animal at Black Jack Campground (Figure 2). It is unclear if there is a breeding population of California mountain kingsnakes on the island or if these animals are escaped pets. We recommend focused surveys for this species in the future."
(Follow this link to download a .pdf file of this report which includes Scott Panzer's picture.)
#16 I have not yet found a museum record to confirm the presence of the Desert Night Lizard on Santa Catalina island. It is listed from "one record of dubious validity" in Schoenherr 2003*.

In a 2005 survey in which they did not find any desert night lizards, Backlin et. al.*** state "The desert night lizard (Xantusia vigilis) is known from a single record, collected in 1952 from the Wrigley Botanical Garden in Avalon (Savage, 1952). This lizard most likely does not currently occur on Santa Catalina Island and the single record may represent an escaped pet.
#17 Formerly known as the Santa Catalina Island Garter Snake. According to Schoenherr 2003* it is currently known to occur only along a "1-mile (1.6-km) stretch of permanet flow in Cottonwood Canyon that includes a small reservoir. There is very little appropriate habitat for this semiaquatic snake on Santa Catalina, and it may be on the verge of extirpation. The total population may include no more than twenty-five to thrity individuals, and they are threatened by a variety of predators, including the introduced Bullfrog...." The snake is described as having "...a unique color pattern. It lacks distinctive stripes and is a deep olive brown with a pale, buff-colored chin and lips. On the mainland this pattern is not representative of the species as a whole except for a population that occurs near Lompoc in Santa Barbara County. ...  It is also interesting that this color pattern closely matches that of the Lower California Garter Snake, Thamnophis digueti, found in a few bodies of fresh water in south-central Baja California."
#18 The subspecies of Southern Alligator Lizard found on San Nicolas Island is unclear. Stebbins 2003** shows it as unknown.
#19 Coluber constrictor is known from Santa Cruz Island from old records from 1919 and 1948. Stebbins 2003** indicates that the status of the species on the island is questionable, and no mention is made of it in Stebbins & McGinnis 2012****. However, you can see two recent pictures taken of racers found on the island which shows that they are definitely present, here.
#20 In a 2005 survey, Backlin et. al.*** state that "Even though we did not detect the arboreal salamanders (Aneides lugubris), a reproducing population may occur on the island. This species is known from one specimen collected in 1941 from Middle Ranch (Hilton, 1945). The island’s oak woodland habitat could potentially support a population of this species."
#21 The report by Backlin, et al *** states that the southern alligator lizard is not found on San Clemente Island. However there is one record of a specimen collected in 1948 from the island in the San Diego Natural History Museum.


References


* Schoenherr, Allan A, C. Robert Feldmeth, & Michael J. Emerson. Natural History of the Islands of California. The University of California Press. 2003.

** Stebbins, Robert C. A Field Guide to Western Reptiles and Amphibians. 3rd Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2003.

*** Backlin, Adam R., Sara L. Compton, Zsolt B. Kahancza, Robert N. Fisher U.S. Geological Survey Western Ecological Research Center.
Baseline Biodiversity Survey for Santa Catalina Island: Herpetofauna and Ants with Remarks on Small Mammals and Others. Prepared for Catalina Island Conservancy. Final Report 2005.
http://www.werc.usgs.gov/fileHandler.ashx?File=/Lists/Products/Attachments/3570/CatReport2004.pdf

****Stebbins, Robert C., and McGinnis, Samuel M. Field Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles of California: Revised Edition (California Natural History Guides) University of California Press, 2012.





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