Giant Salamanders are the largest amphibians in the world. Their size varies from 4 to 5 feet and their bodies and skin colour vary as well (brown, green, and red).
Giant salamanders can be found in North America, China and Japan. They live near mountain streams, which they use as a source of water.
Giant salamanders spend most of their lives submerged in water with their heads sticking out for oxygen. The only time some come ashore is to mate. In some species, the female will lay two strings of eggs. The male then fertilises the eggs by releasing sperm into the water around the eggs. The males generally protect the eggs for three months until they are ready to hatch. The males have been observed using their tails to fan water over the eggs, which is believed to help increase their oxygen supply.
The giant salamander is a terrestrial salamander. They lack gills and must come to the surface of the water to breathe.The giant salamanders have a large head and mouth with well-developed teeth to catch prey.
The East Asian species are the largest and belong to the genus Andrias. The South China Giant Salamander is able to reach a size of 1.8m (5.9ft), whereas the Japanese giant salamander can reach a size of 1.5m (4.7ft). The Japanese giant salamander has also been seen to live more than 50 years.
They are the largest living amphibians in North America. The female salamanders are capable of laying anywhere from 10 to 100 eggs per year, with up to 200 eggs being laid by some females in a year.
The reproductive cycle of giant salamanders is very long. They take up to 16 years before they start reproducing for the first time, and then every 2-3 years after that for the rest of their life span. It is possible for a female to produce up to 600 eggs over her lifetime, though only 10–100 will be laid each year on average.