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Emperor Newt

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Other common names: Yunnan Newt, Mandarin Newt; Mandarin Salamander; Halloween Newt

Scientific name: Tylototriton shanjing

The basics:
The gorgeous Emperor Newt has much to recommend it as a pet, although it is best kept only by folks who can supply the cool temperatures that this mountain-dweller demands. Although the term “newt” is most often applied to highly-aquatic species, the Emperor Newt spends most of its life on land.

The natural range, as far as is known, is limited to China’s western Yunnan Province. Emperor Newts inhabit riverside montane forests, rice fields and wet meadows to an altitude of 2,500 meters (8,202 ft) above sea level.

Appearance / health:
The thick, rough-skinned body is brownish-black in color, and strikingly-marked with yellow or orange along the head, back, legs and tail. The head is topped by a bony ridge (the “crown” that gave rise to the common name of “Emperor”). Adults reach 17 cm (6.8 in) in length.

Captive longevities of 15+ years are known. Heat stress, and the resulting bacterial and fungal infections, is the most commonly-encountered health concern.

Behavior / temperament:
Emperor Newts are fairly inactive but usually content to remain in view and willing to feed by day once adjusted to captivity.

They should be handled only when necessary, and then with wet hands so that the skin’s protective mucus is not removed. Salamander skin secretions may cause irritations when transferred to wounds, eyes, or the mouth.

Housing:
A single adult or pair of Emperor Newts can be kept in a 20 gallon aquarium; larger tanks can support small groups.

Moist sphagnum, carpet moss, or terrarium liners make good substrates, and cork bark rolls or plastic caves serve well as retreats. Emperor Newts do best at 55-70 F, and are stressed by sustained temperatures over 74 F. In many locales, they are best housed in cool basements or air-conditioned rooms. A shallow bowl of chlorine/chloramine free water should always be available.

Diet:
Earthworms and night-crawlers are ideal as the bulk of an Emperor Newt’s diet. Roaches, sow bugs, crickets, locusts, butterworms, horn worms, and other invertebrates should also be offered. Mealworms have been implicated in digestive system disorders, and should be avoided. Most meals should be coated with a powdered Calcium/Vitamin D3 supplement. A vitamin/mineral supplement may be used 2-3x weekly.

Breeding:
Mature males may be distinguished from females by their smaller size and the swollen area about the cloaca. A cooling-off period of 4-6 weeks at 45 F may spark breeding activity. Females deposit 20-100 eggs on rocks in shallow water. The larvae may be raised on live blackworms, chopped earthworms, and frozen bloodworms. Metamorphosis is attained in 2.5-14 months.

Written by Frank Indiviglio

interesting

sparsely illuminated areas, venom is truly odd the tips of the, dark river gravel

Emperor Newt Health Tip

Emperor Newt

From Jul 10 2013 2:55PM

5/5

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