Read About Salamanders

Salamanders are beautiful reptiles that are very popular as pets. Everything you need to know about them is contained in this article.

Salamanders - Facts

  1. Description:

    Salamanders are not lizards, as may be commonly thought, but are amphibians (like frogs). They do not have scales, but do have smooth skin.
  2. Varieties:

    There are well over 300 different species of salamanders around the world. The salamander group also includes Newts and Mud Puppies. The Tiger salamander and the Spotted salamander are two of the most common species in North America.
  3. History:

    Salamander fossils over 150-million-years-old have been found in China. Salamanders are found in almost every country in the world.
  4. Physical Traits:

    Salamanders are lizard-like amphibians with long, slender bodies and moist, hairless skin. They may be a single color, or have spots or stripes of another color.
  5. Other Defining Characteristics:

    Salamanders have tails which they use to help with balance when walking on land and to aid in swimming when in the water. Like frogs, they begin life as a larva underwater, gradually growing into a land animal.
  6. Habitat:

    Salamanders are usually found near lakes and ponds. They are usually active only at night. During the daytime, salamanders live below ground.

Salamanders - Concerns

  1. Benefits:

    Salamanders are generally easy to care for and can be quite entertaining.
  2. Liabilities:

    The skin of a salamander is very delicate. They should only be handled if absolutely necessary.
  3. Health Issues:

    Salamanders have few health issues. However, the oils and salts on human skin can harm them. They can also spread salmonella.
  4. Specific Care Needs:

    Salamanders do not need much specialized care except that their cage must be kept clean, and they must be fed a varied diet such as worms, crickets, and an occasional mouse.
  5. Reaction to Children and other Pets:

    Salamanders do not like to be handled and played with Children and pets should be supervised when in the area of the salamander's enclosure.
  6. Special Household Needs:

    Salamanders move very quickly and like to burrow. Their enclosure should have a secure lid to prevent possible escape.

Salamanders - How to Choose

  1. What to Look for:

    A healthy salamander will be quite active and alert, have clear eyes, nose, and mouth, along with healthy skin.
  2. Supplies:

    You will need an enclosure with a secure lid, a thermometer, a misting bottle to keep the skin moist, and some rocks or driftwood for climbing and basking.
  3. Expense:

    Salamanders may range in price from $10-$50.