Amphibians at the Detroit Zoo

  California newt

At the Detroit Zoo
The California newt can be seen at the award-winning National Amphibian Conservation Center – a leader in amphibian conservation and research – which houses a spectacular diversity of frogs, toads, salamanders, newts and caecilians.


The California newt has a medium-sized warty body with yellowish-brown to dark-brown coloring and a yellow to orange underbelly.


Scientific name: Taricha torosa
Continent: North America
Habitat: Temperate forests, mountains, grasslands
Size: 5 - 8 inches long
Weight: 1.5 ounces
Diet: Insects, amphibian larvae, earthworms and slugs
Lifespan: About 20 years
Conservation Status: Least Concern
Reproduction: A clutch of seven to 30 eggs are laid under rocks. The eggs will hatch in two to three weeks.



The California newt's skin secretes the potent neurotoxin tetrodotoxin, which is 100 times more potent than cyanide.