Newts, where are they!!!!!!

Nowicki418

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Browsing this forum a lot of people make it seem like newts are a common species. It seems so strange how everyone makes a big deal about seeing tiger salamanders when seeing a newt would make me soooo much happier than another tiger. A month ago I thought newts were extremely rare in my state and tiger salamanders were the most common; things are turning upside down. :confused:

Specifically, what kind of permanent bodies of water are they in? What methods are used to find them? What behaviors do they exhibit? Any tips on taking pictures? Video?

Any advice would be very much appreciated. :D
 

Kaysie

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Newts tend to inhabit permanent bodies of water, or semi-permanent. They don't use vernal ponds that get really dry.

If I remember, you're in Ypsi. PM me, I can take you to a pond in the middle of the state that's chock full of newts. Maybe Jaymes can come too! He found his first Ambystoma laterale at that pond.
 

Neotenic_Jaymes

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Newts tend to inhabit permanent bodies of water, or semi-permanent. They don't use vernal ponds that get really dry.

If I remember, you're in Ypsi. PM me, I can take you to a pond in the middle of the state that's chock full of newts. Maybe Jaymes can come too! He found his first Ambystoma laterale at that pond.

I remember that place! It was snowing that night! Who would of thought, salamanders and snow. Kaysie let me know when your coming back in town and maybe I can gather up a few more peoples.
 

Kaysie

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I'm back for an indeterminate amount of time. Get some people 'round and we'll go out. I promise it won't snow on us... yet.
 

TheMattSign

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I'm from PA so this might not be as applicable for you (we only have one species of newt here), but the only place I've seen newts is in a swampy area that only dries out in the really hot summer months.
 

Nowicki418

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I got a minow trap! Are newts atracted to light, meat, or anything like that? Any tricks to increasing its effectivness?
 

Jess125

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I also have not ever been able to find any newts. I have found plenty of redback salamanders, spotted salamanders, blue spotted salamanders but have yet to see tigers or newts.
 

Nowicki418

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Ok, I know it has been a long time since I asked where the newts were. Good news is I've seen them now in a couple locations.

It seems I was previously under the impression that this was a common amphibian to be found throughout my state. Now I understand that the reason I couldn't find them before was because I needed to hop in the car and drive somewhere else :) From what I have seen; if you are in a place where they reside the newts appear numerous. Near one pond I was at, flipping over a single log could yield multiple terrestrial efts.

Their habitat requirements are some of the most specific I've seen. They need a permanent body of water with dense vegetation for them to hide in. Also, the land leading to the water's edge needs to be covered in leaf litter, grass, fallen logs, or something for the terrestrial efts to live under.

Anyway, I'm getting much better with the field herping and it is kind of cool looking back at some old posts where my lifelist was considerably smaller.

To anyone else reading this thread who may be looking for newts or any other species. I'd recommend visiting a variety of locations and different kinds of habitat. I spent a TON of time searching for newts locally and never saw one. Driving to a different town I was able to find them somewhat reliably. (Young field herpers; get a car as soon as you can)
 

FrogEyes

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Add to that:get field guides!

Start with at least one Peterson guide, and for those interested in North American caudates, Salamanders of the United States and Canada.

Beyond that, invest in any state or regional guides appropriate to where you look, as more local guides tend to have more precise maps and details on habits and habitats more specific to the area.
 

Nowicki418

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Maybe it's just me, but I haven't found field guides to be extremely helpful when it comes to locating reptiles and amphibians. My state is in terrible need of locality information. Not only are good range maps difficult to come across but we have species within our borders that are not even recognized by the DNR. Local field guides would completely over look these species.

I'm not saying field guides aren't important. I'm just trying to stress the importance of communication and personal experience in addition to them. And the creators of those field guides need information to make them more useful. We need more people submitting information to Herp surveys.
 

SludgeMunkey

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Maybe it's just me, but I haven't found field guides to be extremely helpful when it comes to locating reptiles and amphibians. My state is in terrible need of locality information. Not only are good range maps difficult to come across but we have species within our borders that are not even recognized by the DNR. Local field guides would completely over look these species.

I'm not saying field guides aren't important. I'm just trying to stress the importance of communication and personal experience in addition to them. And the creators of those field guides need information to make them more useful. We need more people submitting information to Herp surveys.

All states are. This is deliberate. As you have discovered, populations tend to be very localized and small, relatively speaking. Locality data is generally kept publicly confidential to keep the pet trade harvesters and smugglers out.

I know it doesn't make much sense, but to truly find caudates, one must spend serious time searching for them, or know someone that already has the knowledge. This is a good thing as it keeps lots of 500 random wild caught salamanders showing up on places like Kingsnake.
 
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