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Spotted Salamander Care Sheet Archived Comments

"Hello, I just got in, and saw a salamander in my drive. I live in E. TN, and today it was in the high teens, so i brought him in. Made it a make s

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“Hello,
I just got in, and saw a salamander in my drive. I live in E. TN, and today it was in the high teens, so i brought him in. Made it a make shift temporary moss hotel, but I’m wondering if I should try to get it back outside as soon as the weather allows? Not really sure what I should do with a reptile that hibernates actually. I hope he isnt frost bit…
Look forward to your reply…
Thanks…David
Posted by davoid, Jan 21, 2020 01:10 PM


In having the same problem with mine. I learned salamanders don’t like to eat when it’s hot. Also, salamanders need coconut fiber mixed with soil for their happiness. Make sure to leave some miss though.
Posted by Anonymous, Jul 9, 2019 11:26 AM


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Help my spotted salamander has been hiding under the moss in his aquarium for well over a month and he is not interested in eating at all, everytime I check on him he is burrowed under that same dirt and moss and I am worried he will starve to death , I spray him every few days, but he has a light grayish tinge to his skin in areas
Posted by Anonymous, Apr 4, 2019 08:26 AM

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Posted by Anonymous, Jan 24, 2019 01:47 PM

I have aquired 2 clutches of spotted sally larva but not sure what a good variety diet would be for them. Can i feed them tropical fish flakes? Is that enough? Or do they need more variety then that? Someone with experience in this field please let me know. Thanks . rogermclaren845@gmail.com
Posted by Anonymous, Jun 17, 2018 10:35 PM

Someone help me! We found one I thought was dead in my driveway as it was snow and ice on the ground. We brought it in and it’s been a week and won’t eat a thing. It is still too cold to release it and I don’t want it to die. It’s a fully grown adult. It’s super friendly now that he’s thawed out. I just can’t get him to eat. I have tried to contact several Wild life rescues and have had no luck as most places have been closed. How can I help this poor baby?
Posted by AshleyATL1, Jan 19, 2018 08:38 PM

I live in the city in LaPorte, Indiana and our home sits across the street from an old cemetery with a pond. The cemetery was started in the early to mid-1800’s and our home was built in 1889. Our lot size is 50×100 and I recently one night after a rain, noticed more spotted salamanders. I say more because prior to that night I had found 3 in other areas of the property. I now have the count at least to 8 or more. They have holes around the foundation they pop out of and beneath some bricks laid out before a section of the house in back that just has a crawl space. They are all various sizes so I know they are not the same ones just moving around. The nearest pond in the cemetery is maybe 125-150 yards away and crosses a street. We have lots of shade on the property and pine trees so the ground must keep a cool temperature and there is plentiful worms and insects. Have they always been here such as a generational thing embedded in their DNA? This area hundreds of years ago was wetlands. They were here first I am guessing.
Posted by Anonymous, Aug 24, 2017 04:52 PM

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I live in the city in LaPorte, Indiana and our home sits across the street from an old cemetery with a pond. The cemetery was started in the early to mid-1800’s and our home was built in 1889. Our lot size is 50×100 and I recently one night after a rain, noticed more spotted salamanders. I say more because prior to that night I had found 3 in other areas of the property. I now have the count at least to 8 or more. They have holes around the foundation they pop out of and beneath some bricks laid out before a section of the house in back that just has a crawl space. They are all various sizes so I know they are not the same ones just moving around. The nearest pond in the cemetery is maybe 125-150 yards away and crosses a street. We have lots of shade on the property and pine trees so the ground must keep a cool temperature and there is plentiful worms and insects. Have they always been here such as a generational thing embedded in their DNA? This area hundreds of years ago was wetlands. They were here first I am guessing.
Posted by Anonymous, Aug 24, 2017 04:22 PM

I have a small spotted sal and I keep the substrate damp and I even have a water dish in there but he feels dry and sticky to the touch. he eats like a pig and otherwise acts fine. full of energy. should I be worried that he is never wet?
Posted by Anonymous, Jul 17, 2017 09:04 PM

I have spotted salamanders that show up in my basement. I guess they crawl up the drain (it’s a very old house) and breed there. It’s very dry & i’m afraid they won’t be able to get back out & they will die. Would i be harming them if i moved them back down to my pond? Any info would be greatly appreciated…
Posted by Anonymous, Mar 29, 2017 09:59 AM

I really want a spotted salamander as a pet were can i buy one?thank you so much for any information you can get me.
Posted by Anonymous, Feb 10, 2017 04:58 PM

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We have four blue spotted salamanders my grandson found in our wooded yard about 3 months ago. We live in Wisconsin- temperature is in the 30’s. Is it too cold to release them back into the outdoors?
Posted by Anonymous, Dec 4, 2016 08:13 PM

Can I put a salamander in a tank with hermit crabs. Thank you
Posted by Anonymous, Jul 31, 2016 11:17 PM

“Hi Leo,
Thanks for this informative site. We found a small clutch of eggs (just 6) in a vernal pond last week and brought them home. We thought they would be wood frog eggs, but they hatched, and it turns out they were salamanders. I’m used to raising tadpoles, but now I need to learn about raising salamanders. We’ll probably release all but one or two of the larvae early, and then will focus on raising the last 1-2 to maturity. Right now they are in 3 separate glass containers, and we are giving them plenty of fresh pond water. When do I need to bring them into a bigger tank, and when will I need to make sure it’s sloped, so that they can get onto land? Do you just put the tank on a slant, or do you use rocks and substrate to build up a hill? Do they have a phase, like frogs, where they want to go back and forth easily between land and water? When do I need to introduce larger insects into the tank — I’m thinking, based on what I’ve read, that they will be ready to leave the water (and eat larger insects) in about a month? They are one week old at this point. I don’t know the species of course but I know there are a lot of spotted salamanders around here. Thank you for any advice you can give me.
Posted by Anonymous, May 15, 2016 08:38 PM


“Hi Leo,
Thanks for this informative site. We found a small clutch of eggs (just 6) in a vernal pond last week and brought them home. We thought they would be wood frog eggs, but they hatched, and it turns out they were salamanders. I’m used to raising tadpoles, but now I need to learn about raising salamanders. We’ll probably release all but one or two of the larvae early, and then will focus on raising the last 1-2 to maturity. Right now they are in 3 separate glass containers, and we are giving them plenty of fresh pond water. When do I need to bring them into a bigger tank, and when will I need to make sure it’s sloped, so that they can get onto land? Do you just put the tank on a slant, or do you use rocks and substrate to build up a hill? Do they have a phase, like frogs, where they want to go back and forth easily between land and water? When do I need to introduce larger insects into the tank — I’m thinking, based on what I’ve read, that they will be ready to leave the water (and eat larger insects) in about a month? They are one week old at this point. I don’t know the species of course but I know there are a lot of spotted salamanders around here. Thank you for any advice you can give me.
Posted by Anonymous, May 15, 2016 11:21 AM

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Spotteds are found on my property here in NW Ct. Cleaning my pond filter today I had a 6-7 inch guy alive, but weak. The entire end of his head was a white blob. Is that icthy-whatever like fish get? I didn’t think I had that in my fish population, but now I’m concerned. I put him on a damp rock crevice in the pond wall. Thanks for any information.
Posted by Anonymous, Apr 18, 2016 04:44 PM

Spotted Salamanders have been bred in as small as a 20 gallon tank. The keys are to properly over-winter them below 65 degrees. The breeding tank should be filled with water and a small foat, like a piece of Styrofoam, should be made available. The water should be a mix of leaves and sticks. Add the males to the breeding tank immediately out of hibernation, the females a week or so later, generally after the males have had their first shed. Slowly raise the temperature of the water up to 76. Cover the top to retain humidity and breeding will occur.
Posted by Anonymous, Apr 3, 2016 10:04 PM

My students found a spotted salamander on the playground. Being the science teacher, we now have a class pet named “Spots”. We only handle him when his tank needs changing (once a month). He loves the coconut substrate. His habitat gets sprayed down daily with unclorinated water (we add declorinization drops to tap water). He eats mealworms (which occassionaly get fed lettuce and sliced apple) and crickets dusted with nutrients. He eats when he feels like it, usually every 2 to 3 days. He used to just hang out under the moss in his habitat, but as the winter months go on, I am finding him deeper in the coconut substrate. I have tagged this website to my classroom website so that the students know more about “Spots”. I offered the student who found him an opportunity to take him home after the school year. Haven’t convinced the parents yet. They plan to donate him to the classroom. He does take him home during vacations and is doing a marvelous job handling him.
Posted by Anonymous, Jan 8, 2016 11:43 AM

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I live in the metro Detroit area and work in a chemical plant, we found one walking around in the warehouse, covered in dust and looked dried out but still alive, I put him in a dish of room temperature waterfrom the water cooler and cleaned him off a little and kept him in a dark desk drawer till I went home. I got a aquarium and filled it with coconut substrate, a couple of water dishes, a log, some leaves and meal worms.its been 4 days and I dont see him much, he stays buried and I am not sure he is eating, I keep the tank damp and the temp in the low to mid 60s. I dont want to disturb him by digging him up to see if he is ok, I would appreciate any tips or info on care, my email is daveru3@aol.com
Posted by Anonymous, Nov 9, 2015 05:26 PM

I found one in my kitchen in Brittany France. Since their habitat is Eastern N. America it is a mystery how it came to be here. An electricity official who visited the house at the time did not seem to be surprised and offered to remove it but I declined. It eventually exited the kitchen and although I tried to stop it going down a drain it pushed a plastic mat aside and disappeared down the drain
Posted by Stan, Nov 1, 2015 01:53 AM

Wow I just found on under a bucket and its real cold out, so I brought him in. And it looks like he was hanging out with worms. Hes is a HUGE he is probs 10 years!!!
Posted by Anonymous, Oct 29, 2015 02:17 PM

I just found one of these salamanders in my flower garden, I took a few photos and returned him to his exact spot, he was hanging out with the slugs. I live next to a swamp and its always moist, damp and wet here with all the overgrown trees. I live on a protected swamp, wet lands so my little spotted friend can live a long life in nature where her belongs.
Posted by Anonymous, Oct 13, 2015 06:22 PM

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Hi Leo, thanks for sharing your knowledge. I have, by far found your website to be the most helpful. I have a yellow salamander named Sammy and am also curious about the gender. I have no idea if it’s a he or a she. Either way, I will keep Sammy. That works either way. He answers to it or at least when I say it. Anyway, would you have any suggestions for keeping Sammy busy during transitional cleaning time. I am going to get a “bathtub” but would like to put something in there to keep him occupied so I don’t feel so rushed. Again, thanks so much
Posted by Anonymous, Oct 2, 2015 07:45 PM

Thank you so much for this care sheet! I just found a salamander and could not find the species that she is and why she hasn’t been eating much. I will admit I have been handling her a lot but now I know the error of my ways! You are a life saver !!!
Posted by Anonymous, Jun 22, 2015 11:58 PM

I found toothless outside he is so sweet but its hard to get him to eat i have little worms in there right now im getting a tank for him later this week and plan to care for him as instructed on this hope this works or ill be horribly sad
Posted by Anonymous, Apr 26, 2015 07:37 PM