That would be an Eastern Hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis), North America’s largest salamander, found in Virginia from the New River westward (in the Ohio/Mississippi River basin). Living as long as 30 years and growing to as large as about 29 inches, Hellbenders have a fearsome appearance and name and an important ecological role. Virginia Tech’s University Relations has produced a 3-minute video featuring Dr. Bill Hopkins, from the Tech Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, showing a Hellbender and discussing its biology and connection to water quality. The video—posted August 8, 2012—is online at http://www.unirel.vt.edu/audio_video/2012/08/080912-cnre-hellbender.html. Information Eastern Hellbender biology, habitat, distribution, and population status in Virginia is available at the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries’ Web site at http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/hellbender/; the Web site also includes a short video of a Hellbender underwater.
- Virginia Water Status Report as of the End of November 2013, Plus a Quick Look at Nationwide Drought
- Atlantic Tropical Storm Season-end Report Issued Nov. 30, 2013, by National Hurricane Center
- On Virginia Water Radio for 12-2-13: Get a Jump on Jack Frost with Winter Weather Preparedness Week
- Virginia Precipitation and Stream Flow over the Past 7 Days, as of 11/27/13
- Virginia Rainfall and Snowfall Reports for Thanksgiving Week 2013 Storm Available from CoCoRaHS and National Weather Service