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Fire-Belly & Sword-Tail Newts (Cynops & Hypselotriton) Perhaps the most famous and frequently bred newts in captivity, the fire-bellied newts and sword-tail newts are well known throughout the world as being excellent, gregarious captives.

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Old 25th October 2019   #1
Heather Jewett
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Default Combining H cyanurus Races

I have a 1.2 trio of the lighter race and a single of the darker race that I've always kept separate. For space reasons I'm debating on combining them into a single tank, but have been questioning the ethics of doing so- I know they'll breed, and so I want to ask the community about what we feel our responsibility is in preserving genetics of captive populations of species but from distinct regions. Do we feel we have this responsibility? On the one hand I feel the captive populations would benefit from mixing the Gene's of these populations but do we want to preserve their distinctions? I'm very interested to know thoughts on this. Thanks!
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Old 25th October 2019   #2
nai live
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Default Re: Combining H cyanurus Races

It is a moral dilema, the first questions would be whats the harm ? will these animals or their offspring have any effect on the wild populations ? Does it matter if we lose specific races in captivity? Personally i think that each race has an intrinsic value which will be lost if they interbreed, however, if there is a very small population available in captivity with little genetic variation maybe the species can be secured by interbreeding. I dont think this should be an issue in the US atm with this species. As for maintaining distinct races for possible wild release in the future, who knows what will happen to their habitat. Maybe in the future all that will remain are captive descendants of our current pets, if we allow interbreeding we lose races, maybe they could be clawed back with future gene editing , maybe , maybe not, either way actions we take now have an impact in the future. Axolotl would be a good example, functionally extinct in their natural range, millions in captivity but worthless as they are hybrids.
Personally i would keep races seperate or destroy eggs.



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Old 26th October 2019   #3
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Default Re: Combining H cyanurus Races

I agree with Ian. In the past i've heard hobbyist's captive populations described as "genetically dead" to wild ecosystems, but nowadays those attitudes are changing. I know H. Cyanurus is not rare in captivity especially in North America, but there won't be any more (legal) imports so numbers could easily dwindle.
I think if I were in your shoes I would probably house them together unless I planned to breed them, I just wouldn't raise any of their offspring that might be produced accidentally.




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Old 26th October 2019   #4
Heather Jewett
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Default Re: Combining H cyanurus Races

This is exactly the insight I was looking for- something that would justify my hesitation. I kept second guessing myself, thinking I was bring overly cautious but I'm pleased to hear that others feel the same way. Thank you both so much for your opinions. Separate they shall remain (since I want offspring from the trio).



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