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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 16th May 2006   #1
joseph
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A few larvae popei have not yet metamorphosed. One I had noticed early on seemed to have an odd pattern but I never it much attention assuming I'd find out when it morphed. The funny thing is that the other in with it is almost pure black.

Here are a few shots.
Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

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Old 16th May 2006   #2
Tim Johnson
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That's very nice coloration, Joseph, and quite unique (though I have one that's similar).

Pls keep us updated with pics!



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Old 17th May 2006   #3
joseph
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At what stage in life is the one you've got? Any photos?

I've been studying some photos and wondering about the whole colors thing a bit with ensicauda. Jenn says they develop color as they get older. ensicauda seems to have 2 main kinds of coloration on it...the orange/red dashes or lines that run along either the dorsal or the sides of the newt, or the gold markings. Do both develop as they grow older? This one seems to suggest that the gold comes on as larvae.



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Old 17th May 2006   #4
Tim Johnson
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Hi Joseph. I think the coloration on that animal of yours is not the typical "gold" flakes or dorsolateral stripes, but instead something else, hormonal or whatever, that affects the coloration of the skin. The absence of pigmentation that's normally in the skin, maybe.

The similar one I have is now a juvenile. It's a nominate C. ensicauda, not a popei, and is a truly stunning animal. I though I'd posted a couple of pictures of it before but I can't find them. I'll try and post tonight.



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Old 17th May 2006   #5
paris
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oooooh! PUR-DEE! from above you could almost mistake it for a 4 legged koi!Click the image to open in full size.



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Old 17th May 2006   #6
Tim Johnson
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This is the one I referred to:

Click the image to open in full size.



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Old 17th May 2006   #7
ralf
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WOW!



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Old 17th May 2006   #8
Tim Johnson
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Hehe, yep, a real jewel, from any angle Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.



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Old 17th May 2006   #9
andy
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WOW! Cynops aren't really my thing but that is stunning!...



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Old 18th May 2006   #10
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Quite interesting animals, Joseph and Tim. None of mine have turned out anything like that.

One thing I have noticed about ensicauda... it seems to me that CB animals have, in general, less black and correspondingly more orange. When I see a photo of almost any ensicauda adult, I can (I think?) tell whether it is WC or CB based on the intensity of the black color. Does anyone else see this, or am I imagining it?



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Old 18th May 2006   #11
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Wow Tim! That one is awesome! So that pattern came in during larvalhood like the one I've got? Seen anything like these in the wild?

He/she is getting close to morphing so I'll post a few shots soon when he/she does. It looks to be like he/she will be either average sized or a bit on the small side when he/she morphs. In the meantime a biggun is sharing the water with him/her. I find it incredibly weird that of 16 or so eggs sent over this one made it in.



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Old 18th May 2006   #12
Tim Johnson
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I've seen nicely colored newts in the wild, but not quite as nice as these can get. As for the pattern/coloration coming in during larvalhood, yeah, there are early indications that a larva is going to turn into something special, like this other one I'm raising that's from the same nominate ensicauda group as the one above:

Click the image to open in full size.

(Message edited by TJ on June 22, 2006)



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Old 20th May 2006   #13
Tim Johnson
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I've also got my eye on this one (also a nominate ensicauda) because of the especially thick yellow band along its vertebral ridge:

Click the image to open in full size.

(Message edited by TJ on May 20, 2006)



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Old 21st May 2006   #14
joseph
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Interesting stuff you got going Tim! Out of how many larvae are these coming from?

Click the image to open in full size.

Here it is as of today. Some parts of the pattern appear to be fading out a little but the parts where dorsolateral stripes ought to be remain distinct.



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Old 21st May 2006   #15
Tim Johnson
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I guess there are some 80+ larvae in this tank. It's getting pretty crowded in there actually. And there are still lots of larvae in the adults' tank. Here's some pictures of the oddest larva of the bunch:

Click the image to open in full size.

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Click the image to open in full size.

It looks almost like a cyanurus larva, but I can't imagine how that could be as I keep this tank under semi-quarantine.

Too bad yours lost a lot of that coloration, though it's still nice! Click the image to open in full size.



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Old 22nd June 2006   #16
Tim Johnson
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Here's another that looks a bit more like yours, Joseph

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Old 22nd June 2006   #17
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Excellent photos and boy are those weird! As for mine, he doesn't look too different from his peers now as the coloring is not very visible...but he still has more orange than the others. I'll get an update photo up when I get my camera working. I'm a bit worried about him and another little was as I haven't seen them eat before. They appear to be maintaining weight(as in...looking thin but not getting thinner) but it is still quite worrying especially when others promptly stuff their faces and walk around quite plump and vigorous looking.

(Message edited by fishkeeper on June 23, 2006)



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Old 23rd June 2006   #18
anthony
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Very beautiful representations here...........honestly never seen any colour/pattern variables like those!

Anthony



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Old 26th June 2006   #19
joseph
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Here he is as of this week. Should I worry about his weight?

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One of his siblings which I think is coming along quite nicely.
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Old 26th June 2006   #20
Tim Johnson
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It's surprising how much color he (she?) has lost there, compared with how he was as a larva. He looks OK to me...but then sure, it'd be nice if he was plumper. How and what are you feeding him?

I've currently experiencing an over-population of ensicauda larvae and metamorphs, with more morphing every day. Feeding them takes more time than anything else newt-related that I do. It'd be fine if they all ate food fed by hand as readily as my T. marmoratus babies, but such is not the case.

I really need to secure a cheaper, more stable supply of cricket hatchlings if I'm to raise them properly. They're getting some crickets now but mostly wax worms. I'm playing with the idea of raising some of these ensicauda in my garden where food items are plentiful, to see how they fare out there. I'd need something that's escape-proof and predator-proof but allows tiny insects to move in freely. I'm currently considering a 2-meter-long, 1-meter-wide frame, about 20 cm. high, with a secure top and screened sides dug into the soil.



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