The NSS Bulletin - ISSN 1090-6924
Volume 45 Number 2: 45-48 - April 1983

A publication of the National Speleological Society

The Vertebrate Fauna of Mississippi Caves
J. William Cliburn and Arthur L. Middleton, Jr.


Fewer than 50 documented caves exist in Mississippi. Twenty-five of these were studied intensively for 2 years and less intensively for an additional 12 years in a continuing effort to determine the fauna associated with them. This investigation adds 17 species, 16 genera, 15 families, 10 orders, and 2 classes to the known vertebrate fauna of Mississippi caves. Additionally, some previously reported species for which limited information was available have had their known cave distributions in Mississippi extended. Twenty species are considered accidentals within caves, while 12 species are believed to be trogloxenes. The only troglophile is the cave salamander, Eurycea lucifunga, which in Mississippi is found only in caves. Amphibians were the most commonly found vertebrates in the caves.

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