Tank Size for Juvenile Fire-Bellies

FireBellyBaby

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I have 2 fire bellies that are fairly small still (I believe they're about 7 months old) and I was wondering what's an ok tank size for juveniles in specific. I know when they're full grown they'll need at least a 10-15 gallon, but since they're so small currently, I haven't been too keen on putting them in something that large especially since they seem to still be fairly anti-water and I want to be able to monitor their food intake easily.

Another question I have is as tank size increases, does it make it harder to keep the tank at colder temperatures? I live in Arizona and its already fairly hot. Even normal room temperature here is about 75F so I don't want to put them into a larger tank and then be unable to cool it down.

I attached some pictures of what they look like for size reference. I don't have a ruler, so I put a quarter next to them each so you can see basically how big they are now.
 

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AfroNewtkeeper

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If they're in terrestrial phase, then a ten gallon is preferable. Also, if you don't mind suggestions, I would recommend giving them eco-earth or coconut peat as substrate, as sphagnum moss has a pH that can be too acidic for newts. Make sure to fill the water with plants like elodea to encourage them to go into aquatic phase.
 

sde

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I would actually say that a 20 gallon for when they are adults would be a good size. They would appreciate lots of room I'm sure.
Also, I don't think a bigger tank would warm faster, but the opposite. When there is more water it takes longer for it all to rise to room temp then in a smaller tank. If it gets hot there I water chiller would be a great and helpful or even life saving ( for the newts ) thing to have. Hope this helps! -Seth
 

ThoseNewtsTho

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I would actually say that a 20 gallon for when they are adults would be a good size. They would appreciate lots of room I'm sure.
Also, I don't think a bigger tank would warm faster, but the opposite. When there is more water it takes longer for it all to rise to room temp then in a smaller tank. If it gets hot there I water chiller would be a great and helpful or even life saving ( for the newts ) thing to have. Hope this helps! -Seth
2 would be fine in a 10 gallon, but the bigger the better.
 

Azhael

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A small tank is fine while they are terrestrial/semiaquatic. I raise my juvies in 4l tanks i think. It allows for food like springtails to be fairly concentrated and available.
What i would advice is to get rid of the moss you have and substitute it by live java moss. You can have a raft or a continuous layer of thick java moss, then a finger or two of water. That way they will be safe from drowning thanks to the java moss, but will be continuosly wet and more likely to go aquatic. Also, the live java moss will keep conditions adequate processing their waste, while the dead moss you have now is only going to decompose and get filthy really fast.
 

FireBellyBaby

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Thanks to all of you for replying so quickly!

Once they're full grown and aquatic I'll definitely be moving them into at least a 10 gallon tank, but for now they're in a tank that's approximately a 2 gallon so I'm glad to know that's okay for them (4L is roughly equivalent to 1 gallon correct?).

I took everyone's advice and am nixing the sphagnum moss asap! Thank you guys, when I got them, they came with that type of moss so I had no idea about the pH level issue. I just got back from buying some java moss and was wondering if I should rinse it before placing into their tank? I purchased it from an Aquarium shop so it was being kept in a tank with a couple of fish so I wasn't sure if it was safe to just plop in with the newts right away.

I'm sure my guys are going to be thrilled that their home is going to be more suitable to their tastes now.
 

AfroNewtkeeper

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All the plants I've gotten from fish stores I skipped sterilization and just rinsed them under warm water. I don't know if you're actually supposed to, but it hasn't harmed my newts as far as I know.

If you do want to sterilize it, then rinse it in a solution of 10% bleach, 90% water, then rinse it well and let it sit in clean water for 24 hours. Rinse it again and it should be pest and bleach free.
 

FireBellyBaby

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Alright, thanks! I'll try just rinsing it out and put a little in to see how they do seeing as I don't have any bleach on hand. If everything seems okay I'll add in the rest tomorrow.
 
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