|Photo Credit: Jeffrey Marsten|
The smooth skin of an adult often has a light tan, copper, gold or grey marbling against a dark brown or black ground color. In British Columbia, the marbling effect is absent from the throat and underside of the limbs. It has four legs and a strong, distinct head with large eyes; it has teeth in both jaws. The tail is not round, but flattened laterally, like an eel, which aids in swimming.
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The adult Pacific giant salamander leads a sedentary life, but can move a distance of 10.8–54 yards at a time in a short period of activity. Active at night, during the warm rainy season, the salamander can move across the forest floor, occasionally climb a short distance up the bark of trees, and burrow to a depth of 20 feet.