He's decided to go for an even more drastic change... I think his gills are shrinking. I'm actually very sure they are, but he doesn't look (or act) like he's trying to become terrestrial: his tail fin actually looks bigger, his spots are definitely red now and his coloring is identical to his parents', he's air gulping but he's spending most of his time hunting around near the bottom.
I have no idea what's going on. Is it possible for a baby newt to go from neotenic to basically an adult so soon? I've lowered the water just in case, and given him an area to haul out on. He hasn't been using it.
Anyway, here are some pictures from a few minutes ago. Let me know what you think (you can compare them to the previous million pictures I've posted of Sneaky )
I just realized he looks a little bloated in these pictures, but he's actually just extremely well fed.
I think that can even be a more definitive sign that it is neotenic. Neotenic individuals of non-neotenic species, usually have that look, shorter gills(even reduced to numbs), high tail fin, and adult coloration.
I guess though, time will tell. Anyway who cares, he is a looker.
Here are some random pictures (because I'm procrastinating today ).
First, the bigger of the two efts was out this morning. I fed him a couple of worm bits. Honestly, I don't think he's the smartest creature: he got confused and tried eating his own tail. Sorry for the blurriness, I had just misted the enclosure:
I took a couple more pics of Sneaky - he's always begging now. I must have woken him up this morning because he yawned at me:
I don't know how many times I can say how great your newts look Erin! They certainly look healthy and very well fed. On top of that, your setup for the two terrestrial efts is so naturalistic! I certainly couldn't pull off as nice an enclosure as that.
Awesome! Sneaky looks awesome! Just like a mini adult! I was going to say it look like his main body color was changing too, but I thought I was just seeing things! The eft looks healthy too! Can you procrastinate more often?
Yeah, Sneaky does look like a little adult. I don't think I'll ever be comfortable putting him back in with his parents just because they react to anything new by trying to eat it. So even if he's too big to eat in one bite, his legs and tail could still be eaten. He'll probably just have to be alone, which I'm sure he's fine with. More food for him
I'm stressed right now because I have to leave my babies in the care of the pet sitter for 10 days. I had a horrible incident a few years ago with a different pet sitter that resulted in the deaths of all of my tiger sals, so I still don't trust them completely. Everyone's been fed. Even the little eft had a nice fat belly when I spied on him this morning. I'm just mostly worried about the temps in the house. I have an old system: I can either have the heat on or the AC on, but not both.
Leaving anything you care about in someone elses hands is always hard. I grow carnivorous plants and had to do something similar. Well, my mom only watered them once resulting in the death of most of my venus flytraps. I am sure your pet sitter wont make a similar mistake. Besides you can be a pest and call him/her daily to make sure they did everything right. Thats how I made sure my clawed frog tadpole was feed when I went to florida.
The big eft is getting much... bigger. He's quite the earthworm hunter. Little eft won't eat earthworms, but I've seen it catch flies regularly and it's fairly plump, so I know it's eating. Here are a few shots of the bigger one:
He also likes to climb on things.
There are a few larvae in the adults' tank that are quite big now. I've made a half-hearted attempt to catch them, but they're fast little guys. They're big enough that their daddy and mommies are starting to notice them. Hopefully, one or two will make it.
Yeah, I haven't closed this thread yet I might wait until its one year anniversary.
Anyway, 2008 was a really successful year - I can't believe my babies are over a year old now! After 17+ years of failure, this is the first time I've had any luck raising these guys. I don't think it's a coincidence: I don't think I could have done it without all the great advice I got here. So, thanks!
My little newt family has grown quite large. I now have:
The three parents: Fat Newt, Dark Newt, and Male Newt (very creative names, I know).
Big Eft: He/she is quite outgoing and very bold, and is always begging for food.
Little Eft: Shyer than the bigger sibling, and absolutely refuses to eat worms, but is a ravenous fruit fly/cricket hunter. I'm hoping he continues to do well.
Sneaky: He looks completely grown up now, and begs at the glass just like his parents. I still have no idea if it's a male or a female, but he looks male to me. I don't know if the distribution of spots on the tail can be used to determine the sex - my adult male newt has very widely-spaced spots that get blue rings when he's in breeding condition - but Sneaky's tail looks like the male's. Probably not accurate. He has the tiniest little gill stubs still - but I don't think I'd notice them if I didn't know to look.
My husband's taken to calling him 'Macaulay Culkin' because he'll freak out and swim wildly around the tank sometimes for no reason. I don't know - it makes sense to him.
Five large larvae: These are the remains of this year's breeding (excluding what I sent to other people) and they're doing well. I've removed all of them from the parents' tank and they're set up in a small tub. I've got them eating adult brine shrimp, bloodworms, and chopped earthworms. I'll figure out what I'm going to do with them if/when they morph...
The parental newts are now officially breeding again (2nd time this year), so I expect to have eggs available again soon if anyone's interested.
And... some pics. For some reason, I was having trouble attaching them earlier, but they seem to be working now. These are all of Sneaky (you can see his little gill nub sticking out in the second picture):
Well, I just let the first morphling from this year go in the eft tank. He's too big for his big siblings to eat and the terrarium is well-stocked with worms, isopods, and fruit flies, so I'm hoping he has a good chance. He hid himself right away, so at least he knows what to do. I just have to wait and find out if I'll ever see him again
Apparently, while I was on vacation, Sneaky was becoming a man Or a manly newt. Either way, I was shocked to come home and find nuptial pads on my little guy! They're kind of little, whimpy pads, but still noticeable - he's even got the little thigh pads. He's also certainly been spending a lot of time pressed up against the glass, staring into his parents' cage. I can't believe how fast he's grown up!
Anyway, here is the proof of his manliness:
He's incredibly goofy-looking when begging for food:
I guess the next step is trying to find him a girlfriend who isn't a sister, a half-sister, or his mother. I wish I knew which of my two females is his mom.
@sde, hi everybody I'm getting a tiger salamander coming from Katy Texas what are the shipping conditions that's okay to have them shipped to me in the state of Vermont it's just starting to get the temperature low above 45 but it may be too hot to ship him any thoughts or ideas on how to work this out
I currently have a 3 year old axolotl, he hasn't been eating for the past couple of weeks and has lost a lot of weight. Hedwig usually eats bloodworms and earthworms just fine but now he won't even stud it. I've done a water change to make his nitrate lower and his water is at a good temperature