HARTFORD, Vt. (AP) — Wildlife experts say a rare salamander has been spotted in a Vermont forest.

The Valley News reports Jon Bouton was hosting an educational tour last month in Hartford Town Forest when he discovered the Jefferson salamander in a vernal pool. Experts at the University of Vermont and Fish and Wildlife Department confirmed the sighting after receiving pictures of the salamander.

The amphibian is less common in colder climates and sensitive to forest fragmentation. Officials in Vermont and New Hampshire have designated the salamanders as a "species of concern."

Bouton says Jefferson salamanders hadn't been found on the conservation walks in the previous ten years.

The salamanders play an important role in the ecosystem as a nutrient source.

Bouton says the special discovery gives Hartford another reason to protect the forest.

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Information from: Lebanon Valley News, http://www.vnews.com