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Just a few questions I hope people can enlighten me on..

This is a discussion on Just a few questions I hope people can enlighten me on.. within the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) forums, part of the Beginner Newt, Salamander, Axolotl & Help Topics category; Hello! I have an axolotl called Ralph, of whom is roughly just over a year old and I love dearly. ...

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Old 3rd February 2017   #1 (permalink)
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Talking Just a few questions I hope people can enlighten me on..

Hello! I have an axolotl called Ralph, of whom is roughly just over a year old and I love dearly. However I am hoping to gain a little clarification from more experienced owners over a couple of things:

1. Would you recommend live plants in the aquarium?
I want to try and create a more natural environment with live plants and driftwood - would you recommend this? I am planning on using java moss and anubias for the time being. However, am concerned I will no longer be able to do full water changes and tank cleaning? Should I even be doing full tank changes and cleaning? I do it on roughly a weekly basis.. would only doing 10-20% water changes harm Ralph?

2. Is a 32 inches long x 14 inches wide x 17 inches high tank big enough for one axolotl?

3. We had a fungal infection in the early days (hence me cleaning the tank and doing frequent water changes now) of which we survived and gills grew back with avengeance. However recently I noticed his gills are very pale apart from one patch of red.. The affected gill is now losing all the filaments? He is still eating fine. Sometimes flaps his gills but no more than normal (for him). Is he okay? Is it an injury or something more sinister?

I have attached some pictures of him that were taken the other day, maybe you will be able to see the gill I'm on about! He is not usually kept in that bright a light, I just had him in a smaller tank in the kitchen whilst his tank was emptied and cleaned.
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Old 6th February 2017   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Just a few questions I hope people can enlighten me on..

1. This is personal preference. If you're okay with having to meet the demands of the plants, most noticeably lighting, as well as pruning them then go for it. If you don't want the hassle of maintaining them, then avoid it like the dickens.
1.2 Full water changes aren't needed. If you're cleaning everything in the tank too, you're getting rid of beneficial bacteria. I totally understand your concern regarding another fungal attack, but more harm may be done in the process of attempting to prevent it.

2. Yes. 30+ gallons should be sufficient. As with any tank, the more water the better.

3. Take a look at this thread here. The main cause of gill loss is poor water quality. If you're doing full changes/cleanings bacteria is being removed. With the beneficial bacteria being removed, the waste from your axie isn't being processed and is building up toxins in the water.



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Old 20th February 2017   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Just a few questions I hope people can enlighten me on..

Live plants is a personal choice and is up to you. Personally, I prefer having live plants myself. It is important that you read up on aquarium cycling and maintaining water quality as this will help prevent illness. Water quality is extremely important for their health. I have posted some links below. Take time to read through them and ask questions if there is anything you are unsure of.

Caudata Culture Articles - Cycling

Caudata Culture Articles - Water Quality

Axolotls: The Fascinating Mexican Axolotl and the Tiger Salamander



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Old 20th March 2017   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Just a few questions I hope people can enlighten me on..

Hey guys,

Thanks for your help! Sorry for the late response.

First of all I've been less harsh with my water changes, and (touch wood) I've noticed a difference, Ralphie seems less stressed and gills (again touch wood) are looking good. Definitely a lesson learnt there!! Thank you!

In regards to both of your responses about live plants, I've taken my time and have been researching it rather than being impulsive. Will be getting him a custom tank (a larger base with the same height) before I do anything plant wise!

Thanks again guys!! c



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