Ah, Newts and Salamanders- easily the cutest amphibians out of the bunch. The duo make great pets for newcomers to the herp world, and are pretty easy to maintain. However, like all pets, special precautions and attention needs to be paid to newts when you first get them home.
What you'll need
Things to look for
Newts and Salamanders have very sensitive skin, so it's ideal not to handle them frequently. If you're going to, however, make sure that you wash your hands thoroughly before doing so. Also, young children should be supervised when handling their newt or salamander, and pregnant women, infants, and people with weak immune systems should keep their encounters with them to a minimum.
Both feed on crickets and worms, and should be fed anywhere between 3-4 times each week. To maintain food safety, remove any uneaten insects at the end of the night. Do not leave any dead insects in the tank overnight. You should also dust your pet with a calcium supplement twice each week, which can be found at PETsMart, or any other retail chain.
Finding your newt a home
There are a handful of options to look for when shopping for a place to keep your newt and/or salamander.
** Newts and salamanders need homes that are part land and part water. You can accomplish this by doing one of two things.
*** Place a water dish in the terrarium deep enough for full body soaking.
*** Create a divided terrarium with a land area and a water area. The land area should be on a slight incline, which will help the newt get in and out of the water easily.
** Most owners use a small underwater filter to keep the terrarium clean.
** These help maintain the humidity necessary for the newt to live comfortably, which should be at around 80%.
** Try to keep the temperature in the terrarium between 68-75 degrees fahrenheit. Use a thermometer to keep track of the temperature at all times.
** You can line the home with 2-3" of gravel, again with an incline to create a dry area. Clean weekly.