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Axolotls

Axolotls

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Facts to Know About Axolotls

Background

They originate from the cool waters of Mexico. Axolotls live 10 to 15 years in captivity and can grow up to a foot long. They are aquatic salamanders that can regenerate their body parts!

Behavior

Axolotls tend to be a very calm species that spends a lot of its time hanging out at the bottom of your aquarium. They enjoy rearranging sand & plants, hanging out in caves, and tend to be more active at night. Because axolotls are carnivores, they will eat things that fit inside their mouths; this includes fish and other small axolotls.

You can keep axolotls together; however, it is not necessary as they are not a social species. Paired axolotls need to be the same size. This does not guarantee that they will always be friendly toward one another as they can bite off limbs and other parts, which over time will regenerate.

Diet

As carnivores, they eat meaty foods such as bloodworms, brine shrimp, nightcrawlers, Mysis shrimp, beef heart, and even meaty pellets made for axolotls. Juvenile axolotls will need to be fed more often than in their adult stages, where they will only eat a couple of times a week.

Aquarium Conditions

*Recommend water temperature: 60-72° (this means NO heater)

Before getting your axolotl, setting up their aquarium is the most essential step. You can read more about cycling your aquarium water here.

When selecting filtration, a couple of things to keep in mind are that axolotls are pretty wasteful, so your filter needs to clean the water while maintaining a low flow. You can use a canister filter, sponge filter, hang-on-the-back filter, or an internal filter that would need to be oversized to compensate for the amount of waste.

We recommend at least a 20-gallon starter aquarium for your axolotl. It is best to use fine sand for their substrate since they like to sift and dig! Avoid using large or coarse substrate as it can cause impaction issues if swallowed.

Décor & Lighting

Aquarium decorations such as driftwood, caves, rocks, and live plants give your axolotl places to explore and hide!

Since axolotls are primarily nocturnal, no overhead light is needed. If you choose to light your aquarium, we suggest an adjustable LED light that you can lower the brightness of. If growing live plants, we would recommend additional hiding places and caves to make up for the extra light exposure.


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