Creepy Forest Ghost Spot Creature

No idea what this is:

 

A strange object I captured on the trail cam in the forest (photo frames, not video). It appears to be about a foot long, vertical and consists of 5 small equidistant ‘spots’. Bizarrely, it’s in the same location that we had a tree come crashing down in front of us today – the tree broke halfway up its height for no reason.
The object seems to move forward and then go upwards. There’s no way it’s an insect as they’re not out yet due to the cold. In the first couple of photos it’s to the right of the camera.

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Fire Salamander

Fire Salamander

I was out in the forest yesterday after the heavy storm the night before. I couldn’t hear any animals due to the sheer amount of water still dropping from the dense canopy above. However, the forest floor was basically crawling with Fire Salamanders (Salamdra salamandra). The one in the photo was about 5 foot off the floor and in a knoll in a tree, hiding under some leaves. I love these little critters.