Salamanders are sticky because they need water to survive! Without water, salamanders dry up. Why is this? Because of their skin and the way they breathe.
How do salamanders differ from lizards? They look similar, but there are a few differences. Salamanders have very moist, naked skin, clawless toes, and no external ear openings. Lizards have dry, scaly skin, clawed toes, and you can see little external ear openings if you can get close enough. Lizards, because they are used to living on land instead of water, can run much faster on land than salamanders can.
Baby salamanders breathe through gills. Some salamanders retain these gills as adults. But most will go through metamorphosis (when their bodies change) where their gills are replaced by lungs (an exception to this is the lung-less salamander). Salamanders can breathe through their skin too, which is why they always need to be near water, otherwise their skin will dry up.
To learn more about some of Idaho's salamanders, click the salamander names on the right.