Red-Spotted Newt/Eastern Newt (Notophthalmus viridescens)
Red-spotted Newts are the juvenile form of Eastern Newts and are bright orange to dull red in color with blackish spots, becoming browner as they mature. They typically grow to about 6-8 inches long and live between 7-10 years if properly cared for.
Habitat and Tank Requirements:
This species is native to Eastern North America.
As juvenile Red-spotted Newts, they are entirely terrestrial, requiring only a shallow bowl or tub of water big enough to submerge themselves in.
As adults, this species is semi-aquatic and at least half their tank should be water. You can use either a shallow bowl or tub big enough for them to swim in, or use a filter. If using a bowl, the water should be changed at least once every other day. Use common sense if picking out a filter: a pump that is too small will leave the water dirty, while a too-powerful pump with filter out the microorganisms needed to maintain a healthy pH. Misting the tank with water every day or two is also recommended.
Use mulch or moss as a substrate to retain moisture and deep enough that your salamander can burrow in it. Add plants, woods, or rocks for them to climb and hide in. A 15-20 gallon tank can house 1 or 2 adults.
These animals are comfortable in temperatures ranging from 60-74° F. They do not need special lighting.
Be sure there are no openings through which your salamander can escape. A hole large enough for it to stick its head through is big enough for it to escape.
Red-spotted/Eastern Newts are mainly insectivorous and will feed on small crickets, mealworms, wax worms, earthworms, and any other insects small enough for them to ingest. It is recommended that food be dusted with calcium to prevent bone softening.
Allow your salamander time to become accustomed to its new home before handling them extensively. Handling them little by little over a period of time lets the animal get used to you and reduces stress.