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Old 22nd August 2009   #9 (permalink)
taherman
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Default Re: More captive plethodontid breedings

Hi Monkeyfrogman,

If your eggs are from a Desmognathus species, which it sounds like they may be, it is almost certainly Desmognathus fuscus. Larval desmognathus look VERY similar between species.

Your best bet would be to find a small plastic container which seals well and put some perlite in the bottom dampened with pure distilled water. You do not want to put the eggs in water, or to allow the water to actually get the eggs soaking wet, just wet enough to keep the substrate damp and keep humidity high. If the eggs are sitting in water they may absorb too much and swell up, causing premature hatching.

Put the lid on the container and poke a small hole ~2mm in the lid. The eggs do not need much air and there is more of a risk of desiccation than suffocation if you allow too much air flow. Keep the container in a cool place, ~60-70F and check the eggs every few days. If the eggs do make it completely through development they can be raised like most other small larval salamanders...for which there is plenty of info on this website. The eggs can be difficult to hatch without the mother present, as they receive protection from harmful bacterial and fungal infections via contact with the female's skin.

Also, you may want to check on the legal status of keeping native amphibians in Massachusetts, as I am unfamiliar with your state's regulations.

Good luck!
Tim
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