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Northern Two-Lined Salamander help

This is a discussion on Northern Two-Lined Salamander help within the Newt and Salamander Help forums, part of the Beginner Newt, Salamander, Axolotl & Help Topics category; Ok, I definitely need some help. I caught 5 Northen Two-Lined Salamanders from the stream in my back yard and ...

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Old 17th July 2003   #1 (permalink)
christina
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Ok, I definitely need some help. I caught 5 Northen Two-Lined Salamanders from the stream in my back yard and was going to feed them to my hatchling red-eared slider, Sprocket, however, I've been warned that salamanders are toxic, and so I removed them from his tank. Does anyone know just how toxic this species is and they are too toxic to feed to the turtle? I can't release them back to the stream because they have been introduced to Sprocket and his environment, so if he can not eat them, I am going to try to keep them. Please do not get mad at me for trying to feed them to Sprocket...I know everyone here is a salamander/newt nut, and I happen to like them myself; I think they are very cute. However, I wanted live food for Sprocket, and the salamanders are extremely common here, and I'm good at catching them. There really isn't anything else around here that I can catch, and I don't have the money to buy him anything live. So anyway, since I will probably just be keeping them, I need a lot of advice, as I know nothing about the care of salamanders. Three of the salamanders were caught under rocks in the stream, and two were caught under rocks next to the stream. All but the largest have gills in various sizes (smallest one with very obvious gills, largest with gills having hardly noticeable ones). I need to know what I can feed them (I will feed them whether they get fed to Sprocket or if I keep them...I don't want them to starve to death), what kind of a setup they need (can only afford very simple setup), if they can be kept at about 72 degrees (I have no way of keeping it cooler), and anything else anyone can think of. I'd greatly appreciate any advice!

Thanks,
Stina
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Old 17th July 2003   #2 (permalink)
jarid
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Feed them small live foods.Or chopped up pieces of earthworm.Keep all the gilled larvae in an aquatic setup.Try to keep the setup closer to the floor to decrease the temperature or in a basement.You could set them up pretty much with just rocks to hide around and water, maybe some live plants.I'm not sure if the adults of that species prefer aquatic life to terrestrial so I can't tell you what to do with the one without gills but you may be able to keep him with the larvae.If you can't afford to buy your turtle a couple dollars worth of food a week, why are you even keeping it?Feeder fish cost like a nickel.I'm not sure what else they need to be fed but live food isn't very expensive.
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Old 17th July 2003   #3 (permalink)
jarid
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I'd also like to add that the collection of ANY herps in NJ is strictly forbidden.Not only are you trying to feed them to your turtle but you're breaking the law.Always check local laws before doing something like this.
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Old 17th July 2003   #4 (permalink)
christina
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I have enough money to take care of him. It's just that buying a couple dollars worth of fish every week will add up, plus I have to drive at least 15 to 20 min to get to the nearest pet store, which would make it much more affordable if I can just catch him something for free. I'm a college student...I need to save as much money as I can. Also, the feeder fish (goldfish) that cost about 27 cents (I've never seen any that cost a nickel) can carry things that are very bad for turtles. I trust the critters in the spring fed unpolluted stream a lot more than the dirty pet store fish. Also, I didn't expect that there would be a law like that, why would I? All I did was catch a couple of the extremely prevalent salamanders from my backyard. I don't need you to get mad at me and be mean...I'm just trying to take care of my animals. I did not know there was a such a law, you could have just politely let me know.

Anyway...I don't mean to get all snotty or anything...but I really wasn't looking for someone to badmouth me...I'm just looking for help. So does anyone know what else I can feed the salamanders? Will they eat the mini size Can O' Crickets from Zoo Med or do will they only eat live food? About the setup...right now they're just in a small rubbermaid (between 5 and 10 gallon, I don't know exactly), with small tumbled rocks, water, and a flat thing to hide under. The water is only about an inch deep on the side with water, and the other side has the rocks built up to the water line so there is water coming through them. Is this a decent setup?...I want to put a filter in and raise the water some, but I need to get Sprocket a new filter first so they can have his old one. Anyway, I'd like any help you can give me.

Thanks,
Stina
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Old 17th July 2003   #5 (permalink)
jarid
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Raise the water level,Do water changes since you don't have a filter.They wont eat the can o' crickets.They will only eat live yes.They may eat frozen but I didn't include that as an option since they cost money.BTW, anything from the wild has just as much of chance of transferring disease and parasites.The sals in your area may carry something that wont hurt them at all but will kill your turtle.Also, it may just be me but it seemed to me I WAS politely informing you.Trust me I wasn't "getting mad at you or being mean."And that was far from badmouthing you.If I was doing any of these things you would know it.
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Old 17th July 2003   #6 (permalink)
john
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He wasn't being mean, he was trying to stop you getting arrested and save you from a possible criminal record. Fortunately or unfortunately, not knowing the law and then breaking it isn't a good defence when the authorities find out...

And I'm not being mean either.
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Old 17th July 2003   #7 (permalink)
jarid
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Thanks John,
Penalties in NJ are BAD.You could get all your animals taken away and fined for each one.etc.There are horror stories about NJ herp laws on the kingsnake NJ Herp Society board.Some rangers will bust you for even taking pics of NJ herps.Saying you are disturbing their habitat, etc.Some people got busted for herping with no intention of collecting but had stuff like snake hooks with them.=/
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Old 17th July 2003   #8 (permalink)
christina
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I'm sorry, I must have just read things wrong. I didn't know the law. Anyway, I'm not looking for legal advice, I just need to know how to take care of the little guys now that I can't release them.
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Old 17th July 2003   #9 (permalink)
chris
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The rubbermaid is fine but raise the water to about 2 1/2 inches and when they are morphing lower it to about 1 inch,and if it is not at the same time put them in a seperate small container (the ones morphing). On the land area put some bark or moss for hidding spots for morphs.

For food small worms and you could also use a dalphnia net in the creek but throw out out any thing bigger than like 2 or 3 mm(you don't won't water beetles or dragonfly larva).

They like a little bit of current so use something like an air stone but you still need to do partual water changing with dechlorinated
water or you should probably use creek water.

The adults can be kept terrestrial but moist or aquatic or semi aquatic to be safer.

Make sure to get a tight fitting lid because they are exceptional climbers but you will need air holes on the lid,not the side,to provide cirruculation. Good luck!
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Old 17th July 2003   #10 (permalink)
christina
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I know how good of climbers they are...lol It's kind of hard not to notice. I have raised the water to about 2 1/2 inches. I think they are mostly in the process of morphing, one of them has a paddlelike tail, but the rest all pretty much look "all grown up" except for some amounts of gill. They have a "land" area where the rocks are raised to the water level so just a little water is peeking through so they can stay moist, and they have smt to hide under. What is a daphnia net and how do I use one? I was considering daphnia as food, but wasn't sure about it. I've also been looking for an air stone that I know we have, but don't seem to be able to find. Anyway, I'd appreciate any more advice!

Thanks!
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Old 17th July 2003   #11 (permalink)
jarid
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Get a brine shrimp net from a pet store.
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Old 17th July 2003   #12 (permalink)
christina
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Is there any way for me to sort of fashion a net out of stuff we have at home? Like a hanger and something with very fine mesh? Also, what sort of area in the stream should I use it?...Should I go to a slow moving location or a faster moving location? Should I try to keep the net close to the bottom of the water or closer to the surface?

Thanks again!
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Old 17th July 2003   #13 (permalink)
chris
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It would be better to do both depths and I have found larva in both slow and fast so do both of those also because they wouldn't stay there in both depths and speeds if there wasn't food.

You might be able to make one if you use something like sheer curtain mesh size or a little bit bigger.You can use a small clear container to get out any debri or large insects. But take out all salamanders you catch from netting and put them right back as soon as possible.Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 17th July 2003   #14 (permalink)
chris
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Oh and you can just keep the small bugs in with the salamanders so if the get hungry they can eat like in the wild not have to wait for the right time.

Oh and remember take out any beetles, dragonfly or mosquito larva, and any thing else larger than 2 or 3 mm. Also look for small worms in your yard or after it rains but well away from chemicals for the morphs(they will eat the insects to so don't worry if they don't eat the worms.
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Old 17th July 2003   #15 (permalink)
christina
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Actually, I found that I have an old bra (lol) that has a fine mesh that I sewed onto a reshaped hanger. It's amazing what you can do with old stuff if you're a <font color="ff0000">•</font><font color="ff0000">•</font><font color="ff0000">•</font><font color="ff0000">•</font> collector that throws nothing out...lol

What do the mosquito larva look like? I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have to worry about them in the faster moving water, but I dont' know what they look like for the slower or not moving water.
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Old 17th July 2003   #16 (permalink)
chris
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Well it is hard to see them in the creek until they are in the container but they look kinda like curled caterpillars that use their tail to jerk around in the water,they are brown. They would be in the nonmoving parts around the edge but unless it's stagnent(algea,rotting leaves and grasses you don't have to worry.
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Old 17th July 2003   #17 (permalink)
christina
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Well, I went down to the stream and tried to catch stuff. I caught a waterspider, a snail, a very small crayfish, and a couple plants to put in Sprocket's tank, and I couldn't really tell what I got to put in the salamanders' tank other than that I saw a planaria, a little white squirmy thing, and a small plant. I know there's more than that, but I couldn't see into the clear container I put everything I caught into (there was a lot of dirt), and I only saw the planaria and the white thing b/c they were right next to the side of rubbermaid (it's slighty transparent). The planaria was just cruisin' along the side, I doubt it will be doing so for long though...lol Actually something I did see in the stream (that I released immediately) was a couple of very tiny salamander larvae! I didn't know they could be that small! They were no more than like a half an inch long, and so cute! Click the image to open in full size. Anyway, They now have something to eat...although I don't know how much...and I think Sprocket ate the waterspider already...lol...and he went after the snail, but I think it's too big for him (oh well...I guess it'll just eat the algea). I don't expect him to eat the crayfish (it's small...but too big for him), but maybe it'll eat his leftover food. Anyway...thanks with that stuff, I'd still appreciate any advice anyone can give me!

Thanks again!
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