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Old 08-31-2020, 10:13 AM   #1
bananagirl
Help with tiger salamander in metamorphosis

so I purchased a tiger larvae on ebay. Certainly WC. I got him on Friday and he was and still is active and looks healthy but he won't eat. On Friday he had big gills still but was gulping air. So I changed his setup from mostly water to half and half with easy access to get out and in of the water. Declorinated btw. I use coconut fiber enough for him to burrow. Its kept moist and the room varies in temp from low 60s at night to 72 73 during the day.

So on Saturday I saw saw his stripes starting to show up and his gills were noticeably smaller. Sunday his gills were little nubs and he was crawling out of the water. I never owned a salamander larvae before so I was surprised at how fast he changed. Really quite interesting.

So about the food I've been offering red wrigglers from the pet store and blood worms. Tried a cricket too but nothing. On Friday when I first got him a couple hours after I put him in his setup i offered a worm. He bit at it a few times but didn't eat it. I think it was too big as I did not cut it in half. But he has not touched any food since. Is it because he's in metamorphosis? Also he is only like 5 inches, I've seen water dogs a hell of a lot bigger than him that are still fully aquatic. Is it normal to morph when they are so small? Thanks for reading.
 
Old 08-31-2020, 01:37 PM   #2
Herpin Man
I have a few suggestions. For substrate, I would mix a bit of soil into the coco fiber. I would add some sphagnum moss and leaf litter to the surface, along with some pieces of bark for hiding places. You might also find that using a large, sunken water dish to be easier to manage than a half land, half water setup.
For feeding, I would focus on small crickets and dubia for now. Leave a few in the enclosure, and let the salamander hunt in it's own good time. A few small earthworms added to the substrate couldn't hurt, but red wigglers should be avoided, due to a bad-tasting (possibly mildly toxic) substance that they exude.
 
Old 08-31-2020, 04:58 PM   #3
bananagirl
Quote:
Originally Posted by Herpin Man View Post
I have a few suggestions. For substrate, I would mix a bit of soil into the coco fiber. I would add some sphagnum moss and leaf litter to the surface, along with some pieces of bark for hiding places. You might also find that using a large, sunken water dish to be easier to manage than a half land, half water setup.
For feeding, I would focus on small crickets and dubia for now. Leave a few in the enclosure, and let the salamander hunt in it's own good time. A few small earthworms added to the substrate couldn't hurt, but red wigglers should be avoided, due to a bad-tasting (possibly mildly toxic) substance that they exude.
Thank you for your suggestions. So I added some moss and bark to create more hides, switched over to a depressed water bowl, and let a few crickets and wax worms lose in his tank. One question though, what kind of soil would you suggest? I originally was going to use soil. But everything I see in stores has some sort of compost in them and I was under the impression that's not good for salamanders which is why I only used the coconut substrate. Thank you so much.
 
Old 08-31-2020, 05:09 PM   #4
Herpin Man
Organic topsoil is usually a good choice. It helps keep the coco fiber moist and compacted. I would create a moisture gradient in the substrate- keep one end moister than the other. The salamander can then choose where it wishes to hide.
 

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