The Chinese Fire Belly Newt (Cynops orientalis) is a small (2.2-4 inc, 6–10 cm) black newt, with bright orange aposematic coloration on the ventral side. Cynops orientalis is commonly seen in pet stores, where it is frequently confused with the Japanese Fire Belly Newt (Cynops pyrrhogaster) due to similarities in size and coloration. C. orientalis typically exhibit smoother skin and rounder tails than C. pyrrhogaster, and have less obvious parotoid glands.

Chinese Firebelly Newts are mildly poisonous and excrete toxins through their skin. Consisting primarily of tetrodotoxins, newts of the genusCynops pose a medically significant threat if enough toxins are consumed (Brodie et al., 1974). Despite this, skin excretions alone are unlikely to be harmful to humans unless the entire animal is swallowed. Regardless, the washing of hands before and after contact with these or any amphibian is important to reduce the risk of transferring toxins or disease to and from the animal.

In the UK Edit

Escaped during the pet trade

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