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Old 8th July 2019   #1
Acacia
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Question Lasagna- Metamorphosizing Axolotl?

Hey, I think one of my axolotls is metamorphosizing.

In February, a five-month old starburst wild axolotl of mine decided to go 'carpet surfing'. He jumped out of his container (not a mistake I'll make twice!) and stayed outside for an unknown amount of time. When I found him, he was wounded but as all axolotls do, regenerated well.
A few days after the accident-https://i.imgur.com/RF5n2BY.jpg
A few months after(almost fully healed but tail looks like lasagna)- https://i.imgur.com/zQbhf66.jpg

Lasagna, as he has been named, looked normal two days ago. He lived in a tank with two others. He's always been a little behind the growth curve compared to the others, even before the accident.

Today I was shocked to see that his gills had completely shrunken down! At first I thought they had been bitten but they're completely even. Then I realized he was probably metamorphosizing. His water was filtered and clean, and his tankmates showed no signs of metamorphosis. I did a quick google, and all signs are there. His gill stalks and dorsal fin are shrinking at a marvelous pace and he has started to grow (mildly unsettling) eyelids.
I'll be documenting this even though it seems to be relatively common. I don't really know what caused it. My guess is that perhaps it's a combination of genetics and the trauma he suffered in February, plus the diet of Rangen Salmon pellets. I vaguely remember reading something about how 1 in 400 axolotls on a diet of those pellets metamorphisized.
How's my current setup? It's temporary until I read up more on tiger salamanders. Anything important that I'm missing? I put a lid on the container with it partially cracked open so there's moisture but also a little ventilation. Any advice appreciated, especially of you have a morphed of your own! Thanks for reading!
Pictures-
https://i.imgur.com/MjQLx2m.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/tuHtFUb.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/PbTpFZO.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/AdgR0XK.jpg (setup- sloped slate leading to small rocky area, and partially submerged large rocks)
https://i.imgur.com/65pt8sw.jpg



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Old 8th July 2019   #2
KumquatSquats
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Default Re: Lasagna- Metamorphosizing Axolotl?

well i think you are correct about the morphing, those eyelids are pretty unmistakable (i agree, a bit unsettling too).
As far as i know they will need the same care as tiger salamanders, im sure that section of the site has a fair amount of resources but to me your temp set-up seems about right.

i wonder if you could house a morphed 'lotl with unmorphed ones if you had a paludarium with enough water? that might be a bad idea for a reason im unaware of but im curious



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Old 9th July 2019   #3
Acacia
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Default Re: Lasagna- Metamorphosizing Axolotl?

Thank you for the input! Paludariums are pretty neat, but apparently morphed salamanders aren't great swimmers and I'd be worried that he would drown.

Today I saw him above water sitting on the rocks, but as soon as I turned on the lights he scuttled back into the water. My guess is that he still feels safer there. However, I also spied him partially submerged with his nostrils and eyes above water.

Are they supposed to morph this fast? I'd expected this process to take a few weeks at least.



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Old 10th July 2019   #4
Julia
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Default Re: Lasagna- Metamorphosizing Axolotl?

It is a fast process :) Let her decide when she is ready to move onto land. I'd prepare a terrestrial home now. I use a couple of inches of soil mixed with coco, fibre, a few hides and a bowl of water. I found, in my case that newly metamorphosed tigers will make use of the bowl for a while, but be warned....it gets very messy :)



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