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How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

This is a discussion on How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow? within the Axolotl General Discussion forums, part of the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) category; I got my little fella at the start of the year, he was a couple on inches nose to tail ...

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Old 22nd October 2011   #1 (permalink)
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Default How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

I got my little fella at the start of the year, he was a couple on inches nose to tail (and had no limbs at all). Now he's about four inches, with four lovely legs. I was imagining he'd be bigger by now. How long will it take him to reach his full size? He's an active chap and eats like a pig, so I'm sure he is healthy.

I randomly call him "he" which brings me to my next question. How old before gender is apparent? He's showing no tackle at all, so by now, is it safe to assume that he is actually a girl?

Proud photo of the fella attached. I do love him.

Any information about growth and gender greatfully received. Thanks guys.
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Old 22nd October 2011   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

I could be completely wrong about this but I'll give it ago.

It's always been my understanding that it varies loads from axolotl to axolotl. They all grow at vastly different speeds and some end up being massive and some end up being small. Not very helpful.

I think between 18 months and 2 years is normally a good rule of thumb though. I don't think they reach a particular size by then, but whatever size they reach by that point is normally a good indicator? Though, this is only going by what I've read, so I could be wrong!

Edit: Whoops, forget to mention what a fine specimen your axie is, but I couldn't tell you whether s/he was a chap or a chapess though!
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Old 22nd October 2011   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

Thanks Michael. I would never have guessed that growth varied that much. I will just wait and see. Would kind of like him to get a bit bigger though.

The snap doesn't show his ventral side, but I can tell you there is no sign of anything there. If he was a male, would there be something to show for it by now? He must be about one year old.
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Old 22nd October 2011   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

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Originally Posted by richardj View Post
I got my little fella at the start of the year, he was a couple on inches nose to tail (and had no limbs at all). Now he's about four inches, with four lovely legs. I was imagining he'd be bigger by now.
If you got it at the start of the year (January or about then) and it was a couple inches it should be bigger than 4 inches now. I've found that juveniles, under normal circumstances with plenty of good food grow about an inch per month. It's true that they can grow a much different rates, but if it hasn't reached 6-7" in 8-9 months then it is growing relatively slow. What do you feed it and how often?
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Old 23rd October 2011   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

Growth rates vary dramatically, i had a batch of wildtypes layed at the start of june, of the ones i have left the two biggest are seven inches and the smallest about three and a half inches, so it might be that your guy is natural small. However if this is your first axolotl you may want to check out threads on feeding regimes.
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Old 24th October 2011   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

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Originally Posted by xxianxx View Post
Growth rates vary dramatically, i had a batch of wildtypes layed at the start of june, of the ones i have left the two biggest are seven inches and the smallest about three and a half inches, so it might be that your guy is natural small. However if this is your first axolotl you may want to check out threads on feeding regimes.
3.5" is not too small if they hatched in June. Another half inch and they will be the size of the original poster's axolotl that is closer to about a year old, which is definitely not normal.
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Old 24th October 2011   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

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3.5" is not too small if they hatched in June. Another half inch and they will be the size of the original poster's axolotl that is closer to about a year old, which is definitely not normal.
I agree that 3.5" is not too small for that age group, my point was that axolotls have a very varied growth rate and some can reach a very small max size, i saw a picture on this forum of a sexually mature axolotl which attained a size of four inches(or something like that). It may be that this particular axolotl is just a runt or it could be the result of a poor feeding schedule, which is why i suggested that the feeding regime should be looked at. I prefer to be diplomatic and look at possible reasons for a small size rather than just pointing a finger at the owner.
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Old 25th October 2011   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

Thanks for the information. The consensus confirms that my guy is undergrown, that was what I wanted to know. He eats an earthworm three times a week. It's hard to measure an earthworm, isn't it? But the ones I give him are about two inches long. Any bigger than that and he can't fit them in. Surely that is not underfeeding him?

When I got him (I'm calling him "him" but I'm pretty sure he's female), he was in a very poor state, no limbs at all and very skinny. Before he came to me, he was the only golden in a crowded tank of larger wilds and I think he had no chance against them. So I have fattened him up lots and he's got four nice chunky legs, he is still not very long. There is a photo at the top of the thread.

Do you really think it's my feeding, or is there something intrinsically small about him? I'm very grateful of your thoughts.
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Old 25th October 2011   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

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Originally Posted by richardj View Post
Thanks for the information. The consensus confirms that my guy is undergrown, that was what I wanted to know. He eats an earthworm three times a week. It's hard to measure an earthworm, isn't it? But the ones I give him are about two inches long. Any bigger than that and he can't fit them in. Surely that is not underfeeding him?

When I got him (I'm calling him "him" but I'm pretty sure he's female), he was in a very poor state, no limbs at all and very skinny. Before he came to me, he was the only golden in a crowded tank of larger wilds and I think he had no chance against them. So I have fattened him up lots and he's got four nice chunky legs, he is still not very long. There is a photo at the top of the thread.

Do you really think it's my feeding, or is there something intrinsically small about him? I'm very grateful of your thoughts.
The fact that your axolotl had to regenerate its limbs and was in a very poor condition will probally account for some its retarded growth, juveniles also feed every day, adults will generally skip feeding a few days a week, so might try offering him food every day and see if he takes it, after you have fed it a worm, wait five minutes then offer another , repeat till it refuses any more, You might find that its appetite has reduced due to the existing feeding pattern so keep offering it extra food for a few weeks to see if its intake increases.
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Old 25th October 2011   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

You can feed worms that are larger than what they can fit in their mouth in one gulp; they'll suck them in like spaghetti. I wouldn't feed worms that are any larger than his body though.

I wouldn't feed it more than 1 earthworm a day. If you feed too much, it will vomit and that defeats the purpose of trying to increase food consumption.
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Old 25th October 2011   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

So I am underfeeding him? Wow. I swear he eats his own body weight in worms every couple of weeks. But if you say so, I will definitely feed him daily.

Just one more question about sexing axolotl. I reckon he must be coming up for a year old now. No sign of any tackle down there. Does that mean he's a girl? I don't know the timescale when such things normally present.

Thanks again for the advice. It really is appreciated.
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Old 25th October 2011   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

If it's almost a year old, you can probably safely assume he's really a she. Usually you can tell by the time they're 8-9 months, although some can be late bloomers. I had one I was SURE was a female, as they were almost a year and a half old. One day his brothers dropped a bunch of spermatophores. I guess that spurred him into displaying his manhood too.
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Old 25th October 2011   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: How long does it take an axolotl to fully grow?

Hi my 2 axies are now 15months, and it became apparent at around 12months old that they were male!!if you take a picture from above the axie and compare it pictures on here should give you a good idea!she's lovely ny the way!
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