Triturus dobrogicus

Jensino

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Hello,

recently I got four captive bred Triturus dobrogicus with origins from Romania (Lake Razim). They are juveniles and their red bellies remind me of Cynops orientalis. I can´t wait to see the males develop their courtship display, but this will take some time, since they are still very tiny with a length of approx. 5 to 6 cm.
I keep them in an aqua-terrarium with the dimensions 80x35x40 cm (L x W x H). They like to hide under the Egeria densa and between cushions of Lomariopsis lineata.
I´ll keep you updated about their development. Any advice is welcome.


Best regards,

Jens
 

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Otterwoman

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It might not be as long as you think! They may be mating by next year. Good luck!
 

Jensino

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AW: Triturus dobrogicus

I hope you are right. I'll keep my fingers crossed. ;)

Some hobbyists mentioned that their crested newts reach sexual maturity within one year after metamorphosis. According to literature it takes an average of 458 days to reach maturity in captivity (Thiesmeier, B.; Kupfer, A.; Jehle, R. (2009): Der Kammmolch).
But I wouldn´t be disappointed if it takes longer.
 

Chinadog

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T. cristatus will mature in well under a year with a good supply of food, so I would imagine dobrogicus would be similar. Weather year round feeding rather than allowing them a winter torpid period is good for their long term health I'm not so sure.
 

shnabo

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Those are beautiful. They look a little different from the other dobro I have seen, must be due to locality. All the best breeding them!
 

Jensino

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All four newts are doing fine and have shown slightly growth in the past two month. I feed them with Daphnia, different types of mosquito larvae, Tubifex and Enchytraea worms, brine shrimps, Asellus and small mealworms. I try to keep their diet as diversified as possible to prevent deficiency signs.
The water temperature varies between 18-24 °C. Due to their distribution they should be adapted to slightly higher temperatures than Triturus cristatus, so the upper range of those temperatures shouldn´t harm them.
I hope you enjoyed the update and I wish all of you good luck with your newts!
 

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Jensino

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It´s time for an update:

My newts are now between 7 and 10 cm in length, so they have doubled their size since may.
I assume it is one male and three females. The male is smaller, with a more slender body and lighter skin.
I am beginning to fatten them (mostly with earthworms), before the hibernation starts in a few weeks. The actual water temperature is 15 degrees Celsius, when it drops below 10 °C the newts will be taken out from the aqurium and placed into the fridge.
 

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Jensino

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All four newts are hibernating right now.
I had to catch them out of their aqua-terrarium, because they didn´t leave the water even when the temperature dropped to 9 °C. They were still eating and very active at those temperatures. Unfortunately it didn´t get any colder in this room, if I could only lower the water-temperature constantly and stable below 5 °C I would let them hibernate fully aquatic and keep them in their tank all year round. But I don´t want to spent the money on a cooling unit, when I have a full working fridge. ;)
I used a simple interior for the hibernation-box; just some leaves and a halved coconut for hiding and a wet paper-towel for moistening. They were living in this setup for three weeks now and I change the paper-towel and leaves once per week, always trying to not disturb the little newts. :eek:
I collect the falling leaves from my garden, since there are living wild amphibians, I sterilize those leaves with boiling water and dry them afterwards to prevent infections with chytrid or similar. A few days before the hibernation started I stopped feeding my newts to allow them to empty their gastrointestinal tract.
I will let them hibernate like this until January and then relocate them to their tank. So the total hibernation period will be 8 to 10 weeks.
 

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Jensino

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Yesterday I relocated the danube-crested-newts to the aqua-terrarium. A few minutes after introducing them to the tank, they went into the water. When I watched today, they were hunting for Daphnia, Asellus and small snails at water-temperatures around 7 degrees Celsius. It looks like they do pretty well after about two month of winter hibernation.
 

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mr cyclone

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My beautiful dobricus I got from Neils Djeikers back in 2015, are now breeding for the 6th time and I can say they are nearly as handsome as him. Bald is the new blonde!
 

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Jensino

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Just a brief update! Temperatures are on the rise and so the appetite of the newts. No signs of courtship so far. I might have to wait until next year. But I am totally fine with that, I just like them the way they are.
 

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Jensino

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The Life Aquatic

People always say that danube crested newts are smaller and more slender than other species from the genus Triturus and thus better adapted to an aquatic life. I can confirm this. They live almost entirely aquatic and rarely use the terrestrial part of their aqua-terrarium.
It's like... "thank you for your offer, Sir! But just leave us alone now." *lol*
My newts prefer to float onto the vegetation instead and just emerge their heads through the water surface to take a rest. Maybe the reason is, that they could escape easier by just diving if a predator shows up. So my advice for you: Always offer some floating water-plants for your crested newts, because they will highly appreciate the possibility to sit on them.
 

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Jensino

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Feeding frenzy

Most of the time I feed my newts small prey like Daphnia, mosquito-larvae, Tubifex, brine shrimps and things like that. But when I feed earthworms the Triturus go crazy and start a feeding frenzy. They prey on those worms, carry them off and perform a "death-roll". They were even snapping after each other, sometimes swallow the tail of a fellow tankmate and release it as soon as they realize that it's too big to be eaten. There is always a lot of action. They must really like those worms.
But don't get me wrong here, this is a peaceful species, that can be perfectly kept in groups, they are just somewhat greedy during feeding time.
 

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Jensino

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Jensino-care-sheet

Thanks to all for over 2,000 views! I am so glad that you appreciate my work. :happy:
I want to write a short summary of how I've kept my newts so far.
So here is my Jensino-care-sheet: ;)


Description:

Triturus dobrogicus has a brownish to black back and a bright orange, sometimes even red belly. The males develop a very high, toothed, crest during the breeding season, and a white/bluish band along each side of the tail.
They are more slender and smaller than other Triturus species and their skin is smoother.


Natural Range:

My particular animals origin from Lake Razim, Romania.


Housing:

I keep my newts in an aqua-terrarium with the dimensions 80x35x40cm with an aquarium cover that includes 2xT8 fluorescent tubes each 18 W. I removed the lids, so that no heat accumulation forms. But compared with T5 technology, T8 tubes didn't get that warm anyway. But since I am living in a frickin' cold climate with mild summers, high temperatures aren't an issue to me or my newts.
Otherwise I am using a very simple setup. A thin layer of sand, some floating Elodea densa as well as Leptodictyum riparium to improve the water-quality and a few rocks to aid skin shedding. No Filtration, but therefore frequent water changes every week (but to be honest sometimes I am lazy and skip a few weeks). :eek:
For the near future I am planning to get them a larger Aquarium (100x50x40cm) with a small terrestrial part included as well and provide a more complex setup with deeper substrate, more plants, a filtration-system and maybe a LED-panel.
Triturus dobrogicus live mostly aquatic, that's why there was no need for a separate terrestrial setup so far, except for hibernation. My hibernation setup is explained in post #9.
The overall temperature regime is as follows:
From February to April the temperatures varies between 5 and 15 °C, from May to August between 15 and 25 °C, from September to November it is 10 to 20 °C. From November to January I hibernate my newts in a fridge at temperatures around 5 °C.


Feeding:

I am really obsessed with diversifying the diet of my newts. Here is a list of what I feed them regularly (in alphabetical order): Artemia, Asellus, Daphnia, Earthworms, Enchytraea worms, gnats larvae, mayfly larvae, mosquito larvae, Tubifex.

Recently I am trying to get my hands on "Dry Lake Clam Shrimps" and Hyalella azteca.

When they were freshly metamorphosed I fed them on a daily basis. Now, as sub-adults, I feed them 3-4 times a week.


Best of luck with your newts. I will keep you updated about mine.
 

Griffin8891

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Re: Feeding frenzy

Beautiful! I recently got myself two captive bred juveniles a few weeks ago. (still have their gills)

Like yours, mine go into a feeding frenzy when food is introduced. I started putting them in individual plastic containers for feeding because they kept biting each other's arms and gills. I've had another species of newt lose an arm that way. (it grew back he was fine in the end) So now I separate them into individual small containers for feeding. It also helps prevent mucking up the water I suppose.
 

Jensino

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Re: Feeding frenzy

Beautiful! I recently got myself two captive bred juveniles a few weeks ago. (still have their gills)

Thank you! And congratulations for purchasing those juveniles.


Like yours, mine go into a feeding frenzy when food is introduced. I started putting them in individual plastic containers for feeding because they kept biting each other's arms and gills. I've had another species of newt lose an arm that way. (it grew back he was fine in the end) So now I separate them into individual small containers for feeding. It also helps prevent mucking up the water I suppose.

Seems to be the best decision to separate the larvae during feeding, because the gills are vulnerable and could easily be damaged if bitten. I'm glad that your Paramesotriton recovered fully.



I took some pictures from my newts entering the terrestrial part of their enclosure at night. Maybe I should add some more moss and hiding places to increase the comfort.
 

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