Useful Tips

Ordinary or smooth newt


It is interesting in that a series of tubercles form on the sides of its body on each side, and the pointed ends of the ribs protrude outward. The skin is grainy, rich in glands. There is no dorsal crest. The color is brown with fuzzy spots on the back. Ocher-colored belly with small dark spots. On the sides of the body are orange-red spots surrounding the protruding ends of the ribs. Length 20-23 cm, slightly less than half of which falls on the tail.

Distributed in Spain, Portugal, Morocco, where he lives in ponds, lakes, ditches. It leads both aquatic and terrestrial lifestyles, but it is better known as the newt, which can not leave the reservoir for years. Even at a fairly young age, barely reaching half the size of an adult animal, females of the Spanish newt are already quite well distinguished from males by their massive "square" head.

Breeds in February - March and secondarily in July - August, laying about 1000 eggs in two breeding periods. Females attach eggs to plants in the form of short chains. The temperature of the content is 23-26 degrees. It lives well in aquariums; there are cases when the needle-like newts lived in captivity until they were 20 years old.

Triton Karelin (Triturus karelinii)

Triturus karelinii

Body length with tail up to 130 mm in males and 135 mm in females. The skin is rough, coarse-grained. Top dark brown, almost black, sometimes with whitish spots. The belly is orange-yellow with large black spots; individuals with a belly almost black from merged spots are found.

Unlike the female, the male has a crest with beveled, serrated peaks and a pearly-white strip in the lower part of the broad tail. The female has a yellow longitudinal strip at the bottom of the tail, along the ridge there is often a narrow yellow line. It lives in the east of the Balkan Peninsula, in the Crimea, Asia Minor, the Caucasus and the North. Iran. In Russia, it is sporadically found in the foothills of the Krasnodar Territory.

Stay in the water lasts from March to June, individual individuals can be in the ponds all year round. The temperature of the content is 15-25 degrees. Puberty occurs in 3-4 years of life. The ratio of the number of males to the number of females in reservoirs is approximately 2: 1. In the clutch there are 150-300 eggs of greenish color, with a diameter of up to 4 mm. Embryonic and larval development of 80-150 days. Winters both on land and in bodies of water.

The terrestrial phase of life of newts begins after the mating season ends, and parents, laying eggs, leave ponds. As a rule, few terrarium lovers realize that being in the water at this time is harmful for newts and deadly for ordinary newts.

The animal organism is being rebuilt, "adapting" to ground conditions, and if the conditions themselves do not change, the results will be disastrous.

Therefore, for the maintenance of amphibians, an aquaterrarium with a not too deep pond and a land plot is necessary (in a ratio of about 1/1). If you decide to contain newts not only during their water phase, then, from the summer until the next spring, the pool will most likely be empty, so you can put aquarium fish there.

It is also desirable to have a certain amount of aquatic plants (for example, Canadian Elodea), on the leaves of which newts could lay eggs. Artificial plants are not suitable, as the female not only glues eggs, but also wraps the edges of the leaf. Land is also recommended for landscaping, but in this case, climbing plants planted in pots glued to the walls are more suitable. Since newts in their terrestrial phase lead a nocturnal lifestyle and hide for a day under moss or in other dark, humid places, lay sphagnum and several decorative shards on top of the ground.

Both in water and on land, newts feed on invertebrates. But if in the reservoir their larvae become mosquitoes, daphnia, cyclops, etc., then on the ground - slugs, earthworms and larvae of terrestrial insects. However, under terrarium conditions, amphibians can even be fed with mosquito larvae even at the terrestrial stage. An indispensable condition in this case: the feed must move. As a rule, bloodworms or coronets are laid out in a feeder and slightly moistened.

Please try to pick up newts as little as possible. Pay attention to the temperature of the contents! Tritons are amphibians, and their body temperature is only one or two degrees different from the ambient temperature. Therefore, in contact with human skin, newts may burn.

Interestingly, newts are able to regenerate lost parts of the body: crests, fingers, tails, and sometimes even entire limbs. In general, the survivability of these amphibians has long been known to scientists; newts survive even after having been frozen for some time in ice. Nevertheless, such facts are not a reason not to treat amphibians humanly. Create normal conditions for them, and you will see that the newts are interesting, beautiful, and fairly simple creatures.


In length, the size of newts ranges from 8 to 9 cm. The skin of the body is slightly tuberous. The stomach is smooth. The color depends on the species, but most often a brown-olive color. In addition, skin tone can change during life. Shedding in newts happens every week.

The head is large, flat. Connected to a spindle-shaped body by a short neck. The tail is almost equal in length to the body. Two pairs of limbs of the same length. On the front, three or four fingers are clearly visible. The hind limbs are five-fingered.

It is interesting! Tritons compensate for extremely low vision with a developed sense of smell.

Females and males externally differ. The second one has dark spots on the body. In addition, a bright crest grows in males during the mating season. Newts have an incredible ability to regenerate. They can restore not only parts of the body, but also internal organs.

Character and lifestyle

Often live in small groups of several individuals in bodies of water with stagnant water. They can live in small ponds, ditches. The main thing is that the pond is permanent. He loves thick underwater thickets. Active in water around the clock. They are kept at a depth of no more than 50 cm. They float behind the air every 5-7 minutes. But for tritons, the presence of oxygen in the water itself is important. They lead a nocturnal lifestyle, as they can not stand the heat and bright daylight. However, during the rain, daylight hours may also appear.

Tritons emit short sounds at a frequency of 3000-4000 Hz. In the autumn, as soon as the cold comes, the newts move to land and hide under piles of leaves. They can crawl into the empty burrows of small rodents. Zero temperature provokes a slowdown in the movements of newts, up to fading. Animals hibernate.

There were cases when a large gathering of individuals was found in basements and cellars. Tens and hundreds of newts were found collectively wintering in this way. In the spring they return to the reservoir. In this case, the water temperature can be from 4 to 12 degrees.

It is interesting! Adult newts are able to lead both aquatic and land lifestyles. Breathe and gills and lungs. If the pond dries up, then for some time the newts are able to live, hiding in the thick layers of wet algae.

On earth more awkward. But in the water they demonstrate incredible speed and maneuverability of movements.

How many newts live

Relate to centenarians in the animal world.. The average age to survive in vivo is 10-14 years. In captivity they can survive up to 28-30 years. For this, aquarists create special conditions for the prosperous life of these amphibians.

For example, an artificial pond is constructed with a depth of at least 10 cm. An aquaterrarium of 30-40 liters is suitable. Typically, the space is divided into land and water. Land access is constructed from stones or pebbles. Shelters are necessarily made inside. The edges of the pond in no case do not make sharp, otherwise the animal is easily injured. The house is densely populated with plants. So, the newt feels in comfort and safety. Must have a filter in the water.

Terrarium is best located away from direct light sources. Tritons do not tolerate heat and open lighting, begin to hurt and may even die. The upper temperature limit should be no more than 25 degrees. Optimum 15-17 degrees of heat. Be sure to cover the terrarium with a lid, as often the animal escapes. Once in the apartment, it is very difficult to detect. In captivity, keeping two males will lead to constant skirmishes. Better contain heterosexual individuals.

Subspecies of Common Triton

Among the subspecies of the common newt, there are:

  1. Common newt. Nominative, the most widespread subspecies. It occurs from Ireland to Western Siberia. Of the characteristic features has a high serrated crest on the back.
  2. Grape or ampel triton. It lives in Romania. Of the characteristic features - a short dorsal crest, only 2-4 mm.
  3. Arets Newt. Distributed in Greece, Macedonia.
  4. Triton Cosmoswig. Mostly lives in Turkey.
  5. Triton Lanza. Habitat: south of Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, northern Armenia. His favorite places are coniferous and mixed forests. Body length 6-8 mm.
  6. South Triton. It is found in northern Italy, southern Switzerland.
  7. Triton Schmidtler. Distributed in the western region of Turkey.

Habitat, habitat

Common newt lives where there is rich vegetation. Distributed almost throughout the earth. They live in Western Europe, South and North America, Asia, Western Siberia. They are found at altitudes of up to 1,500 meters above sea level.

They prefer to inhabit mixed and deciduous forests, rich in bushes. Avoid open dry areas. However, if in a dry area there is a standing, permanent body of water, then newts calmly settle in it.

The diet of ordinary triton

The basis of the diet in the reservoir is crustaceans, insect larvae and other invertebrates. He does not refuse caviar, as well as tadpoles. On land, slugs, earthworms, larvae. In water, they show great nutritional activity. Also, on land, the diet of an ordinary newt can be centipedes, shell mites.

Breeding and offspring

Puberty occurs at the age of about two years. Activity occurs immediately after hibernation, from about March. During the mating season, males mutate. They have a crest with a blue stripe and an orange edging. The comb is streaked with blood vessels, which provide the individual with additional oxygen. In addition, the males appear lobes between the fingers.

Male and female can be distinguished by the shape of the cloaca. In males it is large and spherical, and in females it is pointed. Males, being in the water, are actively looking for females. To do this, when they see a potential individual, they swim and sniff, touch the muzzle. Having determined that this is a female, they begin to dance.

The mating dance of the newt is interesting and unusual. The performance begins with the fact that the male leisurely, swaying back and forth, swims to the female. Then he stands up on his forepaws. A few seconds later, strongly bending the tail, pushes a powerful stream of water directly onto the female. After that, the male beats his tail with all his might, while watching the reaction of passion. In turn, if the female likes the performed maneuvers, she leaves and allows herself to follow.

The mating process itself is also unusual. The male lays his spermatophores on the pitfalls, and the female picks them up with cesspool. She catches spermatophores with the edges of her cloaca, which then fall into the spermoteka, a kind of recess in the form of a pocket.

From there, the sperm rush to the outgoing eggs and fertilize them. Then the process of spawning begins. It lasts quite a long time, almost a whole month. There are up to 700 eggs in the litter and each female carefully and painstakingly wraps and attaches to the leaf.

It is interesting! Small-sized females prefer the same small males. In turn, large males are more likely to show interest in large females.

After 3 weeks, larvae of newts appear. Their body is fragile, only 6 mm, of a light color with round light spots on the sides. The back can be either yellow or yellow-red. But the colors are not bright, translucent. The first thing that develops perfectly is the tail. Speed ​​of movement is a survival ticket. But the sense of smell appears only after 9-10 days.

But, after 48 hours, the mouth cuts out, and the newt babies begin to catch prey on their own. Most often feed on mosquito larvae. At first, gill breathing, by the time of ripening, pulmonary appears. In the stage of larvae, tritons have pronounced external cirrus gills. The hind limbs begin to be indicated on the 21-22 day of life.

For two or three months, the triton is actively growing and developing, and then tries to master the land for the first time.. By the time of land access, the body length is 4-5 cm. After the first reproduction, these amphibians begin to lead a full life on land. The skin of the newt emits poison, completely safe for humans, but destructive for small animals.

Natural enemies

An ordinary newt has many natural enemies. Many who do not mind trying them for lunch. Starting from their counterparts - crested newts and lake frogs, ending with fish, snakes, vipers. Birds and some animals also occasionally eat clumsy newts on land. In Russia, pike, carp and perches like to eat tritons from fish. Of the birds, gray heron, mallard, and teal are considered enemies. Their mammals are a water vole.

Population and species status

Due to the decline in the population, it is listed in the Red Book in Russia, Azerbaijan. It is considered a rare species in the UK and Switzerland. Protected by the Berne Convention. The main reason for the decrease in the population is the total clogging of water bodies - the main habitats of newts.

In Russia, it is formally protected by the federal laws of the Russian Federation “On the animal kingdom”, “On specially protected natural territories”, and also by order of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of the Russian Federation No. 126 of May 4, 1994

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