Re: NANFA-L-- Red Spotted Newts

Subject: Re: NANFA-L-- Red Spotted Newts
From: Joshua L Wiegert (
Date: Fri Nov 12 2004 - 11:07:03 CST

Hey Casper.

One of my favourite newts -- and real fun ones, too. Mine ate ...
anything. Small fish, blackworms, sinking pellets, anything-in-all. They
werne't picky. The first item on that menu list should answer your
question about keeping htem with fish, too.

I think you may have their life cycle a little mixed up, though. The newt
starts off as a larvae. They live much like any other salamander larvae
for quite a while, I think up to three years. They then develop into an
Eft, which is a beautifully coloured red and black salamander. The eft
leaves the pond and wanders around the woods for up to five years (I've
seen some reports say TEN! I think the average is about two or three,
can't recall.) They then begin getting darker in colour and searching for
a wet area -- a new pond, a new lake, a stream, anything that's suitable.
This is how they disperse -- great method for increasing gene flow that
many typical newts (or fish and other aquatics) don't really get. They
turn this dark black colour with red dots on them -- an inversion of
before -- and start developing the higher tail, etc. etc. At some point,
they start to lighten up and turn olive. They'll spend the rest of their
lives as newts, capable of breeding and living in the water. To my
knowledge, the newt stage cannot revert back to the eft stage any more
than a frog can turn back into a tadpole. I've never heard of anything
different -- if someone has found a published source of this, I"d love to
hear, and can certainly see where it might be advantageous to revert
(e.g., a lake drying up).

I find efts every so often, and know a great spot to collect newts around
here in the spring, when they're just coming out from under the ice. Keep
in mind when keeping newts that they don't have gills anymore -- they're
gone-in-the eft stage. THey need to access the surface, and can (and do)
leave the water. A tigh top with an air gap is a must in the aquarium.
(By the way, they can walk up glass.) You can also set up a vivarium for
them, which is a lot more fun anyhow (and could let you house efts and
newts-in-hte same time.)


Joshua L. Wiegert
AIM UID: JoshuaWiegert ICQ UIN: 276060292
Feel free to contact me by any of the above means for any reason.
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you would not have been informed.

On Fri, 12 Nov 2004 wrote:

> Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2004 10:05:15 EST
> From:
> Reply-To:
> To:
> Subject: NANFA-L-- Red Spotted Newts
> hi all...
> has anyone kept red spotted newts before?
> with fish?
> what did you feed them?
> what was the experience?
> did they morph to the red eft stage?
> how long did you keep them in the newt stage?
> casper

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: Fri Dec 31 2004 - 12:42:47 CST