Black Spotted Newt

Scientific Name:  Notophthalmus meridionalis
Geographical Range:  Southeastern Texas and into Mexico.
Habitat: Pools, ponds, swamps.  They live under logs and rocks when when water is scarce.
Diet in the Wild:  Grub Worms, and small insects
Conservation Status:  Protected
Location in the Zoo:  Texas Wilds Exhibit 

Physical Description:
5 inches long, black spots, with irregular yellowish stripes, and an orange bellie.  Always wet, totally aquatic.  Offspring are like tadpoles, which have gills, and are always under the water. 
Social Organization:
Very solitary. 
Special Adaptations:
The Black Spotted Newt camoflourages well with its environment.  When water is scarce, it will find rocks or logs to live under. 
Reproductive Behavior: 
The male Newt will lay his sperm on the ground under water.  The female will walk over it and pick it up, with her cloaca.  She will lay many long strands of eggs, similar to a frog.  The eggs will stay under water, until they hatch. 
The Animal at the Zoo:
The Black Spotted Newt has been in captivity for 4-5 yrs.  They are breeded at the Fort Worth Zoo. 

Page Author:
Jim Butler

Sources and Links:
Handbook of Salamanders (p. 99)
By Comstock Publishing Company, Inc
Copyright, 1943

Ellen Trout Zoo

Notophthalmus meridionalis-Black Spotted Newt (Cope, 1880).

Grzimek's Animal Life Encyclopedia
By Dr. Bernhard Grzimek
Copyright 1974
Litton World Trade Corporation

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WhoZoo Animal Index

Reptiles and Amphibians at the Fort Worth Zoo