Linnaeus Caecilian Fact File

Caecilia tentaculata

Credit: yvesbas, CC BY 4.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons








Wild 13 years

Captive 13 years




Conservation Status


Least Concern

Life Underground!

Linnaeus caecilian is well adapted to a life underground with their eyes covered by skin to protect them and having little purpose.

They spend their time seeking out insects such as earthworms on which they can feed.

This species is poorly studied and little is known of their breeding behavior and life history.

They occur in a number of protected areas and it is unlikely their numbers have suffered any significant declines.

Read on to learn more about these amazing amphibians.


What does the Linnaeus Caecilian look like?

The upper side of their body is covered by bluish-gray skin with paler coloration on the underside. Across their body the skin is very smooth.

Their eye is covered by a layer of skin. Despite this it is still visible as a spot below. This species is fitted with a pair of sensory tentacles which sit in a depression below the nostrils.

Despite being an amphibian (the same group as frogs) they have no legs.

A Linnaeus caecilian can reach a maximum length of up to 98.5cm (39in).


How does the Linnaeus Caecilian survive in its habitat?

The eyes of the Linnaeus caecilian have become covered by skin and have little use as most of their life is spent below the ground.

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What does the Linnaeus Caecilian eat?

Linnaeus Caecilian are carnivores which feed on insects such as worms.

Learn more about the Linnaeus Caecilian in this video from Animal Fact Files on YouTube


Where do you find the Linnaeus Caecilian?

South America is the native home of the Linnaeus caecilian. Here they can be found in the following countries - Brazil; Colombia; Ecuador; French Guiana; Peru; Suriname and Venezuela.

They may be present in Guyana and Bolivia but further research is necessary to confirm this.


Where can the Linnaeus Caecilian survive?

These animals are found in forest habitats. Further research is needed to determine how this species is surviving in degraded habitats.

Linnaeus Caecilian (Caecilia tentaculata)

Credit: yvesbas, CC BY 4.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons


How does the Linnaeus Caecilian produce its young?

Little is known of the breeding behavior of this species.


What does the Linnaeus Caecilian do during its day?

While no specific research in to this species has been conducted it is likely they spend most of their life underground like most caecilians.

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Predators and Threats

What stops the Linnaeus Caecilian from surviving and thriving?

A predator of the Linnaeus caecilian is the short-eared dog.

While considered uncommon across most of its range this species occurs in a wide area of forest which is as yet undisturbed and it is likely their numbers have faced little reduction.

Their range includes a number of protected areas.

Quick facts

This species may also be known as the bearded caecilian or the white-bellied caecilian.

They were first described for modern science during 1758.

Linnaeus Caecilian (Caecilia tentaculata)

Credit: yvesbas, CC BY 4.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons


Luis A. Coloma, Santiago Ron, Enrique La Marca, Marinus Hoogmoed, Fernando Castro, John Lynch, Mark Wilkinson. 2004. Caecilia tentaculataThe IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T59530A11958955. Accessed on 28 March 2022.

AmphibiaWeb 2012 Caecilia tentaculata <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Mar 27, 2022.

2022. Caecilia tentaculata Linnaeus, 1758. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 28 March 2022].

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