Current understanding of the distributions of amphibians and reptiles in South Dakota is limited compared to that of many other vertebrate groups and was highlighted in a recent state report. Continuing increases in human population, conversion of grasslands to agriculture, and habitat degradation all likely have strong negative impacts South Dakota’s amphibian and reptile species; however, their effects on species declines are difficult to track because of limited historic and modern sampling and the lack of georeferenced occurrence records. These data often serves as baseline occurrence data to help guide current survey or monitoring efforts, and as such, knowledge of both historic and current occurrence records are essential in order to understand present-day species distributions and declines.

This website was created by Drew R. Davis and was officially launched in January 2017. Records of over 13,100 specimens (as of September 2019) have been assembled to create a database of all known amphibian and reptile voucher specimens from South Dakota. These records are primarily from voucher specimens deposited at natural history collections from the United States and Canada but the database also includes photographic vouchers from citizen science programs such as HerpMapper, iNaturalist, and NAHERP. This website will continue to be updated with new records as they are collected and become known.

Drew R. Davis, Ph.D.
Associate Research Scientist
School of Earth, Environmental, and Marine Sciences
University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
Email: drew.davis (at) utrgv.edu

Map of South Dakota counties.

Amphibian and reptile voucher specimens collected pre-2000 (black) and post-2000 (blue). Map created January 2019.

See previous maps: June 2016, March 2017, August 2017, February 2018.

Specimen Records

Collection Code Collection Name # of specimens
AMNH American Museum of Natural History 101
ANSP Academy of Natural Sciences, Drexel Univ. 39
ASNHC Angelo State Natural History Collections 11
ASU Arkansas State University 13
AUM Auburn Univ. Museum of Natural History 1
BYU Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum, Brigham Young Univ. 2
CAS California Academy of Sciences 19
CHAS Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, Chicago Acad. of Science 223
CM Carnegie Museum of Natural History 49
CRCM Charles R. Conner Museum, Washington State Univ. 6
CUMV Cornell Univ. Museum of Vertebrates 27
CUSC Campbell Museum of Natural History, Clemson Univ. 46
DRD Drew R. Davis Field Series 927
DURC Drake University Vertebrate Collections 2
FHSM Sternberg Museum of Natural History, Fort Hayes State Univ. 178
FMNH Field Museum of Natural History 100
HERP H.E.R.P. (Herpetological Education & Research Project) 9
HM HerpMapper 635
iNat iNaturalist 303
INHS Illinois Natural History Survey 31
ISU Iowa State University 5
JFBM James Ford Bell Museum, Univ. of Minnesota 258
KU Biodiversity Institute, Univ. of Kansas 583
LACM Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County 110
LSUMZ Louisiana Museum of Natural History, Louisiana State Univ. 18
MCZ Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard Univ. 69
MPM Milwaukee Public Museum 2
MSB Museum of Southwest Biology, Unvi. of New Mexico 119
MSUM Michigan State Univ. Museum 4
MVZ Museum of Vertebrate Zoology 67
NCSM North Carolina State Museum 1
NPS National Park Service 1
OMNH Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History 70
PN Project Noah 14
PSM James R. Slater Museum of Natural History, Univ. of Puget Sound 18
ROM Royal Ontario Museum 4
SDNHM San Diego Natural History Museum 1197
SDSM Museum of Geology, South Dakota School of Mines 8
SMBU Mayborn Museum Complex, Strecker Museum, Baylor Univ. 10
TCWC Biodiversity Research and Teaching Collections, Texas A&M Univ. 16
TNHC Biodiversity Collections, Univ. of Texas at Austin 2064
UCM Museum of Natural History, Univ. of Colorado 108
UF Florida Museum of Natural History, Univ. of Florida 10
UIMNH Univ. of Illinois Museum of Natural History 85
UMC Univ. Missouri, Columbia 9
UMM Univ. of Minnesota, Morris 3
UMMZ Museum of Zoology, Univ. of Michigan 203
UMNH Utah Museum of Natural History 42
UNSM University of Nebraska State Museum 4773
USNM National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution 234
UTA Amphibian and Reptile Diversity Research Center, Univ. of Texas at Arlington 17
UTEP Centennial Museum and Gardens, Univ. of Texas at El Paso 8
UWSP Museum of Natural History, Univ. Wisconsin-Stevens Point 53
UWZM Univ. Wisconsin Zoological Museum 12
VMUNK Univ. of Nebraska at Kearney Vertebrate Museum 1
YPM Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale Univ. 4