Help urgently needed for four ill juveniles

F

fred

Guest
I would really appreciate some help here - I've reached the end of my expertise entirely. I have four two inch long fire salamander young, out of an original 10. 6 died while in the care of my father while I was at university, but he was using my instructions. The remaining four are slightly discoloured, listless, and reluctant to feed, but in no way emaciated. I can think of many things that could be causing this, and just as many corrective actions to take.
As it is, can anyone advise me on what to do to ensure maximum chances of survival? Currently I have them seperated into small tanks, moist and cool, on a layer of moss with bark to shelter under. The moss is wet, and I have not fed them for a few days.
What now?
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Thankyou in advance. Please, please email me if you have the time.
 
J

john

Guest
Sounds like some temperature induced problem. If you keep most fire salamanders above 20 degrees Celsius (68 F) you're asking for trouble.
 
J

jennifer

Guest
I agree. It could be a nutritional problem, but at this time of year temperature is most likely (assuming you live on the northern half of the globe).
 
M

matt

Guest
It has been particularly warm here in the UK lately, Jennifer, and (if Fred doesn't mind me saying this) I think from my recent discussions with him that this is the key... but that diet has been a factor too.
Positive changes now underway.
 
F

fred

Guest
Matt: agreed with thanks
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This is a tremendously efficient forum.
 
S

sergé

Guest
I am raising juvenile (so metamorphosed) Salamandra's keeping them between 15-20 degrees Celcius. Maximum of 5 animals per box, with only kitchen towel (waterabsorbing paper) or oak-forest soil as bottom cover. Kitchen towel needs cleaning every three to four days, forest soil only once every two weeks. I give shelter by pices of bark or ceramic shelfs (broken plant pots).
Feed them with fruit flies (for the first weeks) then small crickets (self bred so full of nutricious food items; the ones you buy must be fed with nutricious food before you feed them), all dusted with calcium and vitmains (Korvimin in my case). CaLcium deficiences are common in CB salamanders and newts, due to mal nutricion.
For the rest I think keeping Salamandra at living room temperatures is very irresponsible (see also another subject in this forum). If you can't give them good climate conditions (and you can read it very well in the care sheets in this same website!!) then don't start with it! You will save yourself and the animals many problems.
 
F

francesco

Guest
Sergé
I feed my salamandra mostly on turtle pellets (reptomin). Do u think it's ok for them?
 
S

sergé

Guest
Turtle pellets? Increadible! How do you do it? Feeding it from twizers (pincet?)? I wouldn't feed them on one source only, especilally when they are in their growth, but as adults you can vary a lot and can get them used to dead prey (but only if you feed them indivudually by hand). I, however have too much animals to do it like that and don't want the animals to get lazy and fat. That's why I use live food only. But...everbody agrees that the quality of food is very important, but except for Axolotls not much is known of what they exactly need to grow up being healthy individuals. Field research indicates they eat everything that comes in front of their mouth.
 
F

francesco

Guest
Well, yes I feed them by giving the pellets with tweezers. It takes quite a long time to feed every salamandra (and marmoratus seem to apreciate them as well). Faeces made from reptomin seem to be much more "solid" than faeces made from eartworms. This makes me think pellets are good for them. However they only accept them during the warmer months. In winter they go off pellets and accept only live food ( earthworms and maggots).
 
S

sergé

Guest
Well, it is worht a try for people with a lot of patience and not to many animals! Is it only adults you feed like that? I think it must be, juveniles are too small for this kind of feeding.
More solid faeces is of course very handy when it comes to cleaning, but my adults (which feed mostly on enriched tenebrio) have pretty solid faeces too.
 

TJ

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I know people here in Japan who say they successfully feed their sals on Reptomin but I haven't tried it yet. I really should though because I feed mine now almost exclusively on frozen bloodworm and need to vary their diet some. Will report back on the results!
 
R

ralf

Guest
Some of my larger aquatic adults (Ambystoma mex., P. waltl) will readily accept pelleted trout feed and will even pick it up from the bottom.

Ralf
 
F

francesco

Guest
I don't have adults. I have about 25 subadults of various subspecies. This is how I trained them to eat reptomin from my tweezers:
I begin feeding them earthworms with the tweezers. Once they associate food with tweezers I stop feeding them for 4-5 days so they become hungry. Then I give them reptomin moving the pellet in front of them. When they learn to recognise the smell of it I don't need to move it in front of them any more because they'll accept it immediately.
Ralf my pleuros eat it as well, but they're so greedy they'd eat me if I fitted in they're mouth!
 
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