View Full Version : newly morphed spotted diet

14th November 2007, 18:03
does anyone have any suggestions on what to feed newly morphed spotted salamanders? these guys are tiny

14th November 2007, 18:24
Earthworms are a good food for them. Finding some that are small enough this time of year could be tricky.

14th November 2007, 19:40
There’s a number of tiny prey items that can be easily cultured but ideally these would have been started way in advance of them morphing.

Fruit flies have the fastest turn around (D.melanogaster are the smallest commercial variety) but are not a complete food and will require dusting with a vitamin supplement. Other good cultures to have on the go include lesser waxworms, woodlice, spring tails and mealworms. I believe some keepers in the US use blackworms in a shallow dish of water to feed morphs. Another option is to chop small earthworms into bite size pieces that still wriggle enough to attract their attention.


14th November 2007, 21:44
How big do you think a sal has to get before springtails aren't worth it's effort?

14th November 2007, 22:03
When they stop eating them ;).

Some tropic collembola grow up to 4mm, are commercially available and very easy to culture in their thousands. A great starter food for tiny morphs.

15th November 2007, 00:39
Kingswede - how small is "tiny"? Spotted sals usually morph fairly large (compared to eastern newts, the smaller Trituruses, etc). The spotted sal morphs may be too big for springtails. I'd suggest cut-up pieces of earthworm or pinhead crickets.

15th November 2007, 02:21
I morphed out nearly 100 of them, and 98% of them ate 3/16 - 1/4 inch crickets straight out of the water. They're surprisingly agile and grow very fast with nutritiously balanced crickets.


15th November 2007, 04:53
thanks everyone, i put some pinheads in with them and the crickets disappeared, the morphs are about 1/2 the size of my pinky jenn

16th November 2007, 00:40
I'm curious, what is/was the total length of your average juvenile A. maculatum when it morphed? Mine were about 1.5" total length and were capable of eating crickets that were nearly a quarter of an inch long. Obviously, depending upon water quality (nitrates, etc.) they may morph earlier at smaller sizes.

The animals in the photo below are clearing .5" crickets without any problems.


16th November 2007, 09:37
Great picture AC! Who doesn't love baby pictures! Those are some nice lookin' spots!

16th November 2007, 16:43
i only have 2 and they are both about 1.5" long, i didn't raise them though, i bought them from tricounty exotics in SC. how old are the spots in the pic Caudatious?

16th November 2007, 20:48
'Swede - next week, when the temps here are back in the 50's (I'm about an hour from you on the bad side of The River), go into a wooded lot and flip some fallen logs and grab the small worms that live underneath. Go to Walmart and get a medium size plastic storage bin. Drill some holes in the top for air. Through a mix of damp worm bedding and topsoil (no fertilizer) in it and add some non-meat table scraps. Store it in your basement and you should get a decent worm colony going in no time. A few dozen starters are all you need. I did it last year and haven't had to buy a worm in over a year (nightcrawlers excepted). You want the small red ones an inch or so long. Worms will get your spotties growing. Private message to follow...

16th November 2007, 21:24
sounds good brian i'll try and head out next chance i get

16th November 2007, 21:29
The animals depicted in the photo (taken recently) have been out of the water for about 8-10 weeks. They're now about 3 inches total length and nearly the girth of a dime.


16th November 2007, 22:02
Hey Caudatious, just curious if you bred those guys or found an egg mass out there somewhere. Beautiful little guys, either way.

17th November 2007, 16:32
We found some egg masses early on this spring that were stranded in a drying ditch. I moved several to a nearby pool with other masses and brought a couple home.

I am not aware of any true captive breeding of these. Can anyone else here provide information to the contrary?