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Old 17th March 2015   #1
Keith Petrosky
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Default Does an aquatic newt need land?

I have an old chinese firebelly newt and although he has been offered land he never goes on it. I have a large rock cave where its flat and sloped allowing him to climb to the top out of water, but he never seems to go on.

Is there a floating product he can swim onto? I have him in a 10 gallon so it needs to be small. Live plants don't work they rot and die. Was hoping there was some dock that suctions to the glass and as the water level rises so does the dock, and a little is underwater so he can swim easily onto it without struggling.



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Old 17th March 2015   #2
Auli
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

I use floating cork. It's bought from the pet shop and I have some plants hanging on there to make hiding place a bit. I've also had a dock which was attached to corner with suction cups. Both leave water underneath free to swim and seem easy to climb on.



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Old 17th March 2015   #3
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

How large is the rock and how deep is the water? I am wondering if you might perhaps be able to improve the tank a bit in case the water is unnecessarily shallow. You could post a picture of the tank here.
Regarding land area - yes, newts should always be offered somewhere to climb out of water, even if they don't generally want to. It could be very important in case something went wrong with the water.
I also use pieces of cork bark (reptile shops stock them). If you want something that attaches to the glass, look up turtle docks.



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Old 17th March 2015   #4
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

ZooMed makes "mini" turtle docks - Amazon.com : FLOATING DOCK - Size: MINI : Dock Boxes : Sports & Outdoors

PetSmart carries them here, so I'm sure you can get them there.

I have a small floating cork raft that my smaller newts use, but my larger newt prefers hanging out on a large piece of wood that sticks out of the water in the corner of my tank. I just had to make sure to cover any holes in my lid.



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Old 17th March 2015   #5
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

I have turtle docks in all bar one of my tanks, I have used cork in the past, it does the job and looks natural to boot, but the turtle docks are flatter and take up less room above the water line. This means I can fill the tanks up the extra bit and the land area is still usable. They don't look as good as cork to begin with, but I grow moss on mine that spreads out and totally hides them after a while.



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Old 17th March 2015   #6
Keith Petrosky
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

I picked up the mini sized turtle dock it's exactly what I was looking for.

One concern, it's bound to get yucky over time, cleaning it under hot water scrubbing with a paper towel is safe? No coating will come off and foul the water?



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Old 17th March 2015   #7
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

No, I think they are coloured or painted in some way, but I've had mine for years and nothing has ever come off it. If you cover it with Java moss it will use up any waste left up there by the newts. Generally speaking though, very few aquatic newts spend extended periods on land when healthy, so it should stay pretty clean on its own.



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Old 17th March 2015   #8
Keith Petrosky
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

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No, I think they are coloured or painted in some way, but I've had mine for years and nothing has ever come off it. If you cover it with Java moss it will use up any waste left up there by the newts. Generally speaking though, very few aquatic newts spend extended periods on land when healthy, so it should stay pretty clean on its own.
I took the turtle dock out and it smells like paint! I rinsed it under hot water and it's repelling the water and the paint smelling coating rubbed off on my hands and made them oily, plus little chips of paint are flaking off. Call me crazy, but if something is coated in water repellent I would assume since amphibians absorb through their skin this is toxic. I cannot find ingredient list of what the product is made off, and many years ago I brought a bridge decoration from the same company my newt got stuck to and it fouled the water making my newt sick and refuse to go in the water.



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Old 17th March 2015   #9
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

I don't know if this means anything but, I also had paint coming off one of my old ones when scrubbed with hot water, I wouldn't recommend doing it if you're also having similar results. The only cleaning it will really need for newts is for algae, which might not even be an issue at all. I would actually prefer the algae to grow on it instead of the front panel of glass.



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Old 18th March 2015   #10
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Default Re: Does an aquatic newt need land?

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Originally Posted by keithp View Post
I took the turtle dock out and it smells like paint! I rinsed it under hot water and it's repelling the water and the paint smelling coating rubbed off on my hands and made them oily, plus little chips of paint are flaking off. Call me crazy, but if something is coated in water repellent I would assume since amphibians absorb through their skin this is toxic. I cannot find ingredient list of what the product is made off, and many years ago I brought a bridge decoration from the same company my newt got stuck to and it fouled the water making my newt sick and refuse to go in the water.
That's very strange! I've never had any problems at all with mine, although I've had my Zoo med ones a long time now and cant remember what they were like when they were new. I think they are made from polyurethane foam which is inert once its cured, so any oiliness must be a releasing agent to help get them out the moulds at the factory. I do know the suckers smell strange when new because I have to replace them about every six months or so, but I just pour boiling water over them in the sink and it gets rid of it.



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