Does anyone know how to properly care for them? I see some guides online but most sound like a 10 year old wrote them.
I know right now, that are in the land dwelling stage and they will eat bloodworms but thats about it.
My sister found them in her barn and told me to take care of them.
how often do i feed them. every day or every few days?
do they need water bowls? what i seen said they get moisture from the soil (I have whatever moss petco sells. It was soaked in water first.
do they like to climb? right now its in like a 1 gallon storage container. I was thinking either putting it in a 5 gallon or a krtter keeper. should i put in some of those zoo med reptile plants to give it something to explore?
There are 2. one is like an inch and the other is a bit bigger- maybe 2.5 inches.
all i have for decor is one of those cheesy neon colored fish caves from walmart.
Hiya! Be reminded they are wild caught (they are illegal here in Alberta xD) so if you keep them, there is 0 chance of putting them back.
Anyways, under proper conditions they can live between 15 and 20 years. They should have a half and half tank, as they tend to be found in ponds, shallow water, back waters along with weedy grassy areas. They like worms, spiders, snails...basically the insect world for food!
I'd say, a half and half tank would be cool. Have a container that somewhat fits half or at least 1/3 of a tank, for water, and surround it with moss...or I suppose fake grass/moss... avoid sand and bark substrates. The longer the tank the better... Taller is not prefered.
How do I know this? Because I live in Alberta and this is yet another pet I wanted, alongside axolotl that I cannot legally keep xD
edit: they are a hardy species and don't mind different temperatures. I'd say room temperature or a bit higher is fine.
Last edited by Sena Hansler; 06-26-2012 at 09:33 AM.
I have these little guys swarming all around my yard right after we get a storm.
For now, since it's in the Red Eft Stage, which means it's bright red/orange with black/red spots on its back, it will not need water to climb in. All it needs is very moist substrate (which you have) and some misting a few times a day. But it wouldn't hurt to supply a nice shallow bowl of water.
Bloodworms sound like a good food to give them. However, if you can catch some teeny tiny bugs in your yard (just take a brine shrimp net and run it through the grass-- you'll definitely catch something), dump them in a jar with some water to wet down their wings, and you can dump them in the tank for the newt to hunt down.
1 gallon seems awfully small, even though the newt will not get down to much running. However, it's fine for a few days and just make sure you can get your hands on a larger tank.
Red Efts stay in this stage for 3-4 years, and eventually they'll, slowly but surely, start to turn green. Their tail will become more paddle-like, and the animal will enjoy spending long periods of time in water. So it miiiight just be a good idea to give a bowl of water, and the newt will let you know when it's time to do a half-and-half tank.
But when you DO do a 1/2 and 1/2 tank, it's good to leave plenty of little hiding spots in the water (mini terra cotta pots are perfect)......and when the newt turns completely into a fully aquatic adult, do a 3/4 tank.......yes, that's 3 parts water, one part land. The newt will do a lot of swimming, but it still will want to hop out and spend some time on land. When it's aquatic then you can start feeding in the water. Also the aquatic stage should be completed in a 10-20 gallon tank. Though you may not believe it, newts actually like living in small groups. Imagine how lonely he'd be alone.....Get him 2 or 3 friends and he'll be super-happy. But when the aquatic stage moseys along, it's a great idea to supply anacharis, flower pots, rocks, and lots of gravel (not sharp, please) for the newts to hang around on. It's amazing how comfortable they'll get if they have more natural surroundings.
As far as handling goes, these little guys have extremely sensitive skin and will not appreciate being picked up. If you do, they'll squirm and try to run away. But 5 minutes of holding a day wouldn't hurt, as long as you wash your hands first.
Feeding? I say feed 1-2 bloodworms a day. No matter how hungry the newt looks, try not to feed more than that. It's also alright to fast the newt for a day every week. Try feeding at different times so it's not so boring for the little guy.
And last but not least, they do not need to climb. At least not that much. In the woods next to the creek where I go each year to get a "haul" of newts (My dad and I used to go every fall. We would have to travel 1/2 hour through a thick pine forest to get to "Salamander Kingdom"....there were literally thousands of the red efts, and they would be absolutely everywhere. It wasn't hard to completely cover the bottom of a 5 gallon Kritter Keeper with newts) and not one would climb more than 3 inches up the logs and trees. The only thing they would climb is to go INTO a rotten log. Anything else will be pretty much ignored.
I moved them into a larger Critter Keeper thats about 3 gallons. I find them in the ugly neon cave alot, so i kept that in there and added a silk plant in case they feel the need to climb on some leaves or something. I put it horizontally so it provides some ground cover and added a small plastic up that I cut in half with water. I also put some frozen bloodworms in a small seashell but it looks like neither of them touched it. I guess I can go catch some wild bugs for them but i'm not to fond of that idea *shudders*
There are 2. One is really tiny and the other is maybe 2 inches?
The larger one inside the FUGLY cave. I don't think these two are gonna be aquatic for quite some time.
I dont suppose they will eat freeze dried daphnia?
I'm not sure about the moss, but the newts will only eat live food when they're in this red stage. When they're aquatic they will have to be "trained" to eat newt pellets and that sort of stuff if you're not too keen on always feeding live food.
Other than that you're doing a great job :D