Plethodon - from the New Latin word plethein and odon meaning to be full, pertains to these
New World terrestrial salamanders that lay large yolk filled eggs and do not pass through
an aquatic larval period
vehiculum - the Latin word pertaining to a vehicle, relating to their movement on land
Salamanders of the genus Plethodon are known as woodland salamanders because of their preferred habitat. The western red-backed salamander is entirely terrestrial: it lives, feeds and mates on land. Unlike most salamanders, their larvae hatch in full form and do not have an aquatic phase. Despite their terrestrial nature, these animals require damp forest habitats to survive.