View Full Version : Smooth newts, terrestrial phase problem?

11th June 2012, 21:17
Hi folks,

I recently discovered a newt in it's terrestrial phase, trapped inside a brick wall and nowhere near any bodies of water. I took it home, thinking it would be difficult to keep and really intending to set it free at a nearby nature reserve.

So it sat in a 50/50 water/land tank. It has been hiding inside a seashell for a few days and then by complete chance I happened upon a puddle full of young adult, aquatic smooth newts so I took three of them home to join the first one.

The terrestrial newt is difficult to feed and very placid, the aquatics are the exact opposite. I don't know enough about the terrestrial phase and I thought it would have been prolonged by this newts unfortunate locale and perhaps it would begin to progress to aquatic in the right conditions. Perhaps it's new buddies would have spurred it on? All the newts are similar sizes.

So tonight I was really surprised to find the aquatic newts have all gathered out of the water around their little terrestrial friend. They're "interacting" too!

My question really is, can I expect the little terrestrial newt to go aquatic. If so, how quickly? And if not, I'm tempted to take it to the reserve because it's difficult to feed and I worry that it won't survive in my care.

Also, are their legal implications to releasing the newt(s)?

13th June 2012, 01:49
Sooner or later, it's likely that all of them will be terrestrial.

I don't know about the legal implications, but if you have no other amphibians in your house (i.e., no diseases they are likely to have picked up) I think it wouldn't be a problem to release them in the same area where they were found.