Red-spotted newts eat insects, worms, leeches and mollusks, as well as the young and eggs of some other amphibians. In captivity, red-spotted newts have been known to eat meat.
The red-spotted newt passes through three habitat changes during its lifetime, first hatching into an aquatic environment, then living on land as an eft, before returning to the water as an adult. These habitat shifts will naturally affect feeding habits, and small crustaceans are common in the diets of aquatic adult newt.
In this latter stage of life, adult red-spotted newts are able to escape predation by fish due to the color of their spots, which signify toxicity.