Tiger Salamander Care Sheet Archived Comments

Just found a little pile of tigers under a board in my basement—maybe 20 or so individuals of various sizes. They scattered when I picked up the board

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Just found a little pile of tigers under a board in my basement—maybe 20 or so individuals of various sizes. They scattered when I picked up the board. Guess I’ll try luring them into a large mouth plastic bottle for removal to a low lying culvert nearby.
Posted by Anonymous, Oct 2, 2019 07:25 PM

We have a tiger salamander at my college and she’s absolutely amazing! she eats well and stay a good consistent weight, as we live in the UK the animal welfare laws are different to most countries but we try to replicate the feeding pattern that they’ll normally get when in the wild meaning we don’t actually feed them everyday but that also doesn’t mean we don’t under feed her. I don’t think they are that hard to take care personally but it all depends on the characteristics of that animal, just be patient with them.
Posted by Anonymous, Sep 30, 2019 02:05 PM


My son’s tiger salamander used to have a good appetite but started to lose it gradually and now he wont eat at all. He hasn’t eaten anything in about 4 weeks. He looks healthy though. Not skinny at all. I wondered if he was constipated as for a time he wouldn’t eat much more than meal worms and I know their skins are difficult to digest. No sign of him defecating in months.

The only other thing I can think of is the substrate. I was recommended to use the sort that you use in aquariums that supports a lot of plants. It says on the packaging that over time it will make the water slightly acidic. Could this be it? He stopped eating the same time that he started to burrow.

Many thanks.
Posted by Anonymous, May 6, 2019 08:42 PM

Kinderteacher, you teach our children, yet couldn’t be bothered to read the article? It answers all your questions, as well as nearly all the questions asked in the previous five pages of comments.
Posted by Anonymous, Feb 17, 2018 07:55 PM

Hello I am a kindergarten teacher in the Tetons. I caught a tiger salamander and I am planning on making it my class pet. We are going to study it and become experts. I am new to reptiles and would love to help this little guy live and thrive.
Do I need a heat light, it won’t eat the mealworms I offer, there is a water bowl and a substrate and a fake plant what more do I need? Thanks so much and if any of you would like to be an expert to 24 kindergarteners I would love it!!!! Thanks Tori
Posted by KinderTeacher, Sep 23, 2017 09:22 PM


i just got a tiger salemader, how can i tell what sex it is?
Posted by Anonymous, Aug 4, 2017 04:50 PM

I LOVE my little tiger! She’s such a blast to have! I have been feeding her nothing but minnows for the last year, after trying to feed her other things and they didn’t work, and she seems to be loving it and living well and happy! She’s not gaining a bunch of weight, though she has grown in size she hasn’t gained any “”bad fat”” so to speak, and she seems to be getting the food she needs as she’s always moving around and is very interactive when I’m around her cage.

We tried nightcrawlers but she just wanted nothing to do with them. She liked mealworms, but I found out those are not good to use as normal food as well as I was unaware they turn into beetles…I wasn’t warned however that these were actually larva and not worms, even though I explained I was insectophobic and would prefer worms over bugs so I can easily pick them up with tongs and they didn’t make noise. They were also easier to store, so there was a lot of plus factors to using worms over crickets and other insects.

I opened them up after feeding her some regularly for awhile and found that there were no more “”worms”” but instead a bunch of crawling beetles… to say the least that got thrown away and I did some digging for something else to feed her. I then tried to feed her a mix of thawed frozen brine shrimp and blood worms…she didn’t seem to like those either, so it was back to the drawing board for ideas.


I found an article of a longtime owner of salamanders that some of them can and will eat small fish like minnows and sometimes smaller goldfish once they get past a certain size! Luckily she was just at the size to eat small minnows, so I decided to give it a try…She took to them super quickly and I’ve been feeding her them every since! She’s so lively and interactive now I can’t imagine going back to trying to feed her anything else!

They really are amazing creatures! I never would have imagined myself owning a salamander someday, but here I am! And I LOVE her!!
Posted by Anonymous, Aug 3, 2017 03:25 PM

I just got a tiger salamander and I was wondering if anyone who currently keeps them can give some insight into what is best for them to eat.
Posted by Anonymous, Jun 11, 2017 06:09 PM

What do you do if your tiger salamander is getting really fat?
Mine has about 3-5 crew crickets a day or meal worms
Posted by Anonymous, May 29, 2017 06:54 PM


I just got one and I made my terrarium half land and half water with two inches deep and acuario me sand at the bottom
Posted by Carlos, Feb 21, 2017 01:20 PM

If anyone wants a baby tiger salamander I suggest Underground Reptiles. I do NOT suggest Backwater Reptiles (just look up unboxing videos on youtube and you’ll see). I got my baby barred tiger salamander from Underground Reptiles and he is so cute. He was shipped overnight to me from Florida all the way to California happy & healthy. He doesn’t like mealworms and will only eat crickets (he’s such a character). And keep in mind that males will fight each other even if there are no females around. So if you want more than one be sure to not get more than one male if possible. I love my little guy so much and his name is Bumble (since he has the markings sort of like a bumble bee). These guys make GREAT PETS! They are so easy to take care of and he is a great eater. Strongly recommend these for beginners or experts. Anyone can easily keep these.
Posted by Anonymous, Dec 11, 2016 07:46 PM

Hi John,


I teach how practical feeding of animals for our Technical Animal Management courses in Northern Ireland, My students are learning that different animals consume different amounts of food in relation to their body weight. Could you be so kind to let me know if there is a value for this point? Has enough research being done in tiger salamander in relation to the amount of food they need to eat. I would appreciate a lot any help you can give us.

Best regards,

Posted by Anonymous, Nov 29, 2016 06:38 PM

I have a Tiger Salamander that is older and is showing a new behavior. He has been soaking in is water dish excessively for the pass three days. His normal behavior is to dig under his soil a burrow, coming up to hide under his log on occasion, and poke his head up when he is hungry. But now he is soaking in his water dish all day. We have taken him out and set him back on the soil but he goes right back in the water dish. Has anyone else had this experience with their sallies? Is this a sign of a health issue?
Posted by Anonymous, Nov 16, 2016 10:56 AM


I caught and eastern sal and he does not eat small grass hoppers or night crawlers had it for a week temp has dropped here frost ever night so I don’t think I can let it go can you get wild caughts to eat need help plz 18la50@gmail.com
Posted by Anonymous, Oct 21, 2016 11:31 PM

I just noticed my tiger salamanders back leg has been severed right next to his body. It is bleeding, will he die? I’ve had him almost two years & im heartbroken. Do I need to find a vet?
Posted by Anonymous, Aug 2, 2016 09:56 AM

I just noticed my tiger salamanders back leg has been severed right next to his body. It is bleeding, will he die? I’ve had him almost two years & im heartbroken. Do I need to find a vet?
Posted by Anonymous, Aug 2, 2016 01:25 AM

I purchased a Tiger salamander from Backwater Reptiles and I’ve had it for two years now. It’s grow quite a bit and I feed it mainly nightcrawlers. It burrows a lot of the time, but it did so against the glass so I can see it in the burrow, which is pretty cool.
Posted by Anonymous, Jul 16, 2016 05:18 PM

I have had my tiger salamander for two years now and I started to notice one of his eyes are getting foggy. I’ve been changing his water more frequently but it seems like it’s getting worse. If anyone knows how to fix or even a good vet in Colorado please email me asap! AngeliqueColewenna@yahoo.com
Posted by Anonymous, Jun 14, 2016 10:57 PM

I have had my tiger salamander for two years now and I started to notice one of his eyes are getting foggy. I’ve been changing his water more frequently but it seems like it’s getting worse. If anyone knows how to fix or even a good vet in Colorado please email me asap! AngeliqueColewenna@yahoo.com
Posted by Anonymous, Jun 14, 2016 10:56 PM

Hello, I have two very fat! tiger salamanders. I’ve had them for about 2 years now. They are pretty cool pets. I’ve been feeding mine freeze dried meal worms, that Walmart sells. I’ve got them eating out of my fingers.lol.. They go crazy for the worms. They love night crawlers also. I’ve been catching these tiger salamanders at a factory where I work. Last year I bet I caught over 50 of them.they are thick here in montana . Well, if anyone ever wants to email me about them they can. cochise@midrivers.com
Posted by Anonymous, Nov 28, 2015 12:54 AM

I have a very plump tigirium that usually is docile but I need to ask, will stroking their back alter their health?
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Posted by Anonymous, Nov 10, 2015 06:03 PM

I have two salamanders of my own. they eat normal but now its starting to become fall and they have lost their appetite and starting to move slowly. Are they getting ready to hibernate? Can i keep them through the winter? I’m afraid if I release them they won’t be used to the cold and finding food on their own.
Posted by Anonymous, Sep 6, 2015 10:16 AM

Make sure ur hands are clean of all chemicals, human stuff before handling them. Thier skin absorbs chemicals!! They need to stay moist or they desicate and dry up. Never release in dry hot places. They must stay cool – my guys are kept between 60 and 80 degrees – too much heat and they die. In the winter they burrow under ground. They have a very slow metabolism and go for long periods without food underground where they are cool. Inside where warmer they need to eat weekly. We see them in the high rockies during Aug and Sept. they have to burrow bfore the snow comes and ground freezes or they die. I have rescued quite a few that were dried out/almost dead during hot summers or when trapped in man made structures. The first thing I do is put them in bowl of chemical free water to moisten their skin. They aleays start swimmming. If they are really small, I get them tiny meal worms or chop up earthworms and feed them with a pair of plastic feeding tweezers that won’t cut them like regular tweezers. Old ones get crickets, meal worms, peices of earth worms, pine beatles. The substrate in the area where u keep them must also be chemical free and the same ph that they are used to even a good change in pH can kill them if it happens too quickly. best to use soil from outside in their natural environment. avoid any small stones like those sold at pet stores as they accidently eat them during feeding in the enclosure. Mine was constipated with 7 stones before we figured it out and vet said to remove from their enclosure. Took two weeks to pass and they clogged his throat so he kept making regurgitation gestures. They must have clean water to swim in and drink – chemical free water as i said such as well water is a must as they absorb any chemicals through their skin and can die easily from exposure. The water is also where they do their business and were they shed their skin so change the water regularly. When I rescue them, I get them back in shape and release within a week. The only reason I kept the one is because I found him in our shed after ground froze.
Posted by Anonymous, Aug 15, 2015 06:19 PM

I live in colorado and I have 6 tiger salamanders living very happily in my window well. They just appeared out of no where and began with 2 and now im up to 6! All of them are about 6-7 inches from nose to tail. It has been very hot lately so I have been trying to keep the window well fairly moist and shaded with plants. I even put out a shallow bowl of water they can get in and out of. They burrow under ground during the day. I have been feeding these little ones for a month now and I am seriously considering keeping them. (I’m not sure I have a choice anyway!) I dont know where they came from of if they can get out but I’m worried when the temperature drops and it starts to snow. Will they hibernate? Should I or can I bring them in for the winter and put them back out when it warms up?? They are very friendly and will eat from my hand… They even greet me at the window when they know I’m coming. I’m just concerned when it gets too cold for them . Any info would help I literally know nothing about tiger salamanders and my husband thinks I’m crazy!
Posted by Anonymous, Jun 29, 2015 11:42 PM

We recently found and released a wild 14.3 inch Tiger Salamander in central New Mexico just North of Albuquerque and about 1 mile east of the Rio Grande near an irrigation ditch. Amazing looking, the tiger stripes were a yellow teardrop like pattern against a very shiny pure black background. It was tempting to keep as a pet but we just couldn’t bring ourselves to do it. Feel privileged just to have seen one this beautiful and large -a spectacular creature! E G and L G
Posted by Anonymous, Nov 5, 2014 09:53 PM

Thank for the help
Posted by Anonymous, Oct 26, 2014 02:39 PM

VERY HELPFUL! Thank you!

B x
Posted by Anonymous, Oct 22, 2014 06:58 PM