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Old 2nd December 2002   #1
steve
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can anyone give me a few pointers on feeding newly metamorphed newts once they are on land as they will not re-enter the water to feed on blood worm.are the cold tempretures playing a part in this.



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Old 2nd December 2002   #2
damian
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Hi Steve,Depending on which type of newts you have I would try transferring the juveniles to a terrestrial(misted frequently) set up and add to this some moss, gathered locally if possible as this will be teeming with small live insects that will be consumed avidly by the young newts, I've used this metod for raising newly metamorphosed newts of the Triturus group.Also I have given them small chopped earthworm and providing the pieces are small enough for the newts concerned they should also be eaten with no problem



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Old 2nd December 2002   #3
Tim Johnson
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Steve, I had the same prob initially. I used to rely on pinhead crickets, but it was awkward and costly to acquire them every week and my poor juvies sometimes went for days without food.

It wasn't until Kai (thanks Kai!) boldly pointed out how skinny my juvies were that I began taking the matter seriously. I've since mastered the "art" Click the image to open in full size. of feeding bloodworm by hand and my juvies are now nice and chunky.

Click the image to open in full size.

Happy to share this technique with you...in fact, there's really nothing to it, but it might be helpful to demonstrate it through pictures anyway:

* melt frozen bloodworm in a small bowel like this with just a little water and move the bloodworms you are going to feed first to the side of the glass for easy grasping

Click the image to open in full size.

* use a set of pincers/tweezers to grasp one end of the worm (I prefer this shape)

Click the image to open in full size.

* gauge how much you are going to feed by the size of the juvie -- just one worm at a time for a newly morphed Cynops juvie, for example (I dunno if other species' juvies are big enough to handle bloodworms right after morphing)

* don't start with the juvies who are all in one place together or you may lose track of who has eaten and who hasn't, or they will fight over the same worm -- start with the isolated ones and the move on from there

Click the image to open in full size.

* dangle the worm in front of the juvie's mouth, not too low, and not so close that the worm sticks to its mouth and annoys it -- give it 5-20 seconds or so to see/smell/assess what's in front of it and let it attack the worm in its own way (don't try to steer the worm yourself once the newt enters into its pre-strike concentration mode, just keep holding it there) -- also, no need to wiggle the worm around so much that you scare the newt away! I usually don't need to wiggle at all

Click the image to open in full size.

I feed my Cynops juvies about 3-4 worms each now, once every 2 days.

Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.

By the way folks, I know I'm not supposed to be keeping them on Sphagnum moss because of its acidity...Click the image to open in full size.

Nate has a method of feeding his morphs on paper towel that you might want to do a search on. ;)

After you've mastered the art of feeding by hand, then try feeding with one hand while taking pics with the other! Now there's a real challenge! Click the image to open in full size.

Good luck!




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Old 2nd December 2002   #4
Tim Johnson
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Sorry John, thought I did things right this time but 2 oversized pics slipped in by accident. Please delete them if you can. TKS



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Old 2nd December 2002   #5
steve
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thanks for that tim great pics
i'll give that a go, i've also ordered some fruitfly cultures to give them a go



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Old 2nd December 2002   #6
jennifer
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Steve, I wouldn't rely entirely on fruit flies. I raised some eastern newt efts on a diet of mostly fruit flies, and they didn't grow well and later many died. I think they needed worms. Also, there are questionable chemicals in most fruit fly medium.



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Old 3rd December 2002   #7
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Use as varied a diet as possible, depending on the size of the young newts I would use springtails[only usefull for very tiny juveniles], grindal worms whiteworms chopped earthworms.
Live bloodworms can be offered in a shallow lid barely covered in water, on a damp sponge or paper towelling.
I have, and still use fruit flies, but have found that fruit fly larvae make a much more substantial meal.
If you do not want to use a special fruit fly medium for your culture, try the mashed potato method on www.livinglunch.co.uk
On the subject of moss substrate, I use a moss substrate for newly morphosed newts which I rake up from a mossy lawn.
As Damian advises the moss usually contains very small insects which make usefull food items for smaller juvenile newts.
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Old 4th December 2002   #8
Al Cadavero
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Hey, I agree with Morg; I have found some young newts will thrive on fruit flies where others will not. I have raised several species to adult breeding size using just about everything that was mentioned. Cynops sp. seemed to fare better with fruit flies.
I have found utilizing a fine mesh black fabric/clothe that lays on top of your substrate after you sprinkle your flies into your setup, works well. It provides a conopy for the flies to rest and allows your small newtlings to easily catch the flies. Misting with water works well too. If I didn't do this, I had more flies outside of the setup then in the newt's bellies.
Over all, tiny worms (blood, black) are excellent source of food. I try to mix up my food options with tiny slivers of beef heart ocasionally and found this gets your off spring off to a good start. Triturus sp., Pleurodeles sp., Cynops, and Ambystoma sp. seem to put on bulk faster with a varried diet (even sinking soft fish chow). Notopthalmus sp. have always given me a run for the money and seems more difficult with the eft stage. My N. v. dorsalis efts really thrived with black worms and beef heart.
When my fruit fly cultures are going strong, I seem to get some escapes that always end up in sitting water. I have even witness some Ambystoma opacum larva feed off of the surface (escapee flies). Ambystoma larva can be very insatiable feeders.Click the image to open in full size. (sorry, didn't mean to get off on a tangent)



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Old 4th December 2002   #9
steve
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thanks to all who replied to my post

steve



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