View Full Version : Japanese Fire Belly Eating Issues

10th June 2013, 03:06
Hello everyone,

I have two Fire Belly newts that were purchased approximately two years ago. I was wondering whether anyone might be able to help me with an eating problem I have been experiencing with one of them. During the time I have owned her, she has been a relatively healthy Japanese Fire Belly that tends to be sensitive to slight changes in her environment. There have been cycles of eating problems she has undergone that have lasted for a few days at a time, but the reason for these are still relatively unclear to me. Her companion is an extremely hardy Chinese Fire Belly (purchased on accident, because the fish store could not determine between the two) who gets along with her comfortably. This newt, despite, a fungal infection upon initial purchase, has been very healthy. I feed them both a diet of freeze dried blood worms. At the moment, the Japanese newt has not eaten in almost a week. Any suggestions about the issue?


10th June 2013, 06:24
Freeze dried bloodworms are not a healthy diet for newts - they contain basically no nutrition and are not very appealing, particularly to a greedy species like Cynops pyrrhogaster. The ideal food would be earthworms, as they are very nutritious and, apparently, delicious for newts. Also try a range of defrosted frozen or live fish food, including bloodworms, Daphnia, blackworms and tubifex. You can also culture your own whiteworms and Daphnia pretty easily.

These two pages will help you with suggestions: Caudata Culture Articles - Food Items for Captive Caudates (http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/foods.shtml)

Caudata Culture Articles - Worms (http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/worms.shtml)

Hope that's useful and you can get the newts eating better.


PS watch out for aggressive interaction between your two species of newt - the larger Japanese species may hog all the food or even snap at the Chinese fire belly, particularly when food is about, and can also tolerate warmer temperatures.

10th June 2013, 07:15
Thanks for all your suggestions. I am personally quite surprised that I am having trouble with the brine shrimp, because I owned two Chinese Fire Bellies previously, who both lived to the age of eleven off of this primary staple- and apparently loved it. The Japanese newt may need some different food sources I suppose. As stated, the Chinese one devours the shrimp. I do feed the newts live blackworms ocassionally, so perhaps I'll start by purchasing some tomorrow.

Thanks again!

11th June 2013, 07:18
I bought the newts some blackworms today, and both of them were extremely appreciative, so, for the moment, the matter is solved through the thrill of the hunt!

11th June 2013, 07:37
Is it brine shrimps or freeze-dried bloodworm that you are using (you said bloo-dowrm originally, but shrimp in the last posts).
Blackworms are a very nutritious food and your newts will be very appreciative, I'm sure!
Eleven years isn't bad, but these newts are capabale of living well beyond twenty (I have a friend with a 30-ish year old Cynops pyrrhogaster) - a good varied diet will do them a lot fo good. The livefood is also more stimulating for them to hunt, which is probably good for them and also more fun to watch!