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Under Water, Over Land
Tools & Techniques for Nature, Outdoors, Wildlife & Underwater Videography.


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Old March 18th, 2009, 02:44 PM   #1
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Red Eft

Here’s one of those “missed it by that much” shots. The diopter on the EVF got bumped on the hike in and I didn’t detect it until after I encountered this chap. As you can see, the plane of critical focus is inside where I intended (and it’s always so narrow with macro). I thought the subject interesting enough to show it anyway.
http://www.hotspot-online.net/Video/Red_Eft_6.mp4

Red-spotted newts (Notopthalmus viridescens) have an interesting life style. The eggs and larvae are aquatic. After several weeks or months they metamorphose into a terrestrial juvenile called a Red Eft. At this stage they may disperse up to 20 miles. After 2-3 years they metamorphose again. They retain the red spots, but the background orange color becomes dull olive green, the toes become webbed, and the tail becomes dorso-ventrally flattened into a paddle. The adults are aquatic and may live up to 20 years. Notice how the eft walks with it’s elbows and knees up like a crocodilian. The color is aposomatic- a warning to predators that the skin secretions are poisonous. As a result, they are bold aggressive little predators in the leaf litter. Overall length 4.5 cm.
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Old March 19th, 2009, 06:31 PM   #2
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Wish I could describe Smooth Newts life cycle as you did for Red Eft, Mike, but here's a brief clouded clip instead...


Smooth Newt on Vimeo
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Old March 20th, 2009, 08:54 AM   #3
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Very cool Brendan. They’re in the same family- Salamandridae. I wish I had something like that in my garden pond! Smooth Newts (also known as Common Newt) have an interesting mating display which is often illustrated in books on animal behavior.
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Old March 22nd, 2009, 09:19 AM   #4
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It is interesting enough indeed! What a fab little chap and the footage looked Ok despite what you descibe. Thanks for posting Mike
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Old March 22nd, 2009, 09:39 AM   #5
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Mike,

Very nice!! a new species for me to see.
we have tiger salamanders here in our garden pond. this is so beautiful in comparison!!
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Old April 28th, 2009, 12:58 PM   #6
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While re-reading this I realize that I made a missleading statement. I should have said that the adults are semi-aquatic. While they do spend most of their time in the water and can respire entirely through their skin, they can and do breath air and occasionaly haul out on land. I hope to post some video of the adults soon.
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