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Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) A dedicated topic for those seeking help with Axolotls, showing off your photos, or just to talk about them.

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Old 24th April 2019   #1
AnimalArtist
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Default Axolotl Paludarium

Hello! I was wondering what any axolotl experts would think of my idea for a new axolotl tank. I am hoping to use a 40 gallon (approximately 151.5 liters) paludarium for my axolotl. 30 gallons (113.6 liters) would be for him, paired with filtration and plenty of plants to help as well. The other ten gallons I was hoping to use for a more land dwelling species. Many turtles and salamanders are actually illegal where I live, so they’re out of the question. I first thought of poison dart frogs because of their colorful patterns and land dwelling nature, but I’m afraid that if they fell in the water, they might get eaten. To combat this, I was thinking of adding frogbit or water lettuce to cover the water’s surface. The other species I was thinking of was a dumpy frog. They’re very common at many pet stores near me, but they’re arboreal, so they might not enjoy that too much. The heating requirements are also very different compared to each other, so I don’t know how well that would work. Reptiles are out of the question too. To be honest, I’m rather stumped on how to make this vision come to life. If anyone can help, I’d love to hear your ideas!

Sorry for any grammar or spelling mistakes! I have autocorrect on.



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Old 25th April 2019   #2
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Default Re: Axolotl Paludarium

i think you hit the problem on the head, any land based tankmate would need to require a similar climate as an axolotl AND be safe to be eaten by the axolotl or too large to be eaten (but still unable to harm the axolotl itself)

suffice to say its a tall order, im sure something might work but theres a pretty good reason you cant find many examples online of such setups.
i did however see one where the guy had an ant colony on the land portion, i could see bugs (safe to eat) being possible options



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Old 25th April 2019   #3
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Default Re: Axolotl Paludarium

I'm not an expert on salamanders, but there are plenty of those on the other subforums here. I do have a friend with tiger salamanders, and from what I have seen those shouldn't be incompatible with axolotls.
The larvae are so similar shabby pet shops occasionally mix them up. As adults, their size is comparable to axolotls (so they won't fall victim to hungry axolotls on the rare occasion they decide to take a dip). I'm guessing it could be possible they take a munch out of axolotl gills, but I doubt it'd happen much in practice. The 10 gallon you have left for the terrestrial part of the paludarium should be sufficient for one tiger salamander.
I think. As I said, not an expert.


I also know people with hermit crabs, which could be suitable as well. 10 gallons should be enough space for three of them (they like company). They mainly eat fruits and veggies and will mostly stay away from the actual water, so I don't think any of the two species would eat the other.


For both salamanders and crabs the temperature is probably on the high side for axolotls (at least 21 C, I'd say), but if you manage to keep the water slightly cooler than the air around it, that should work out.



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Old 25th April 2019   #4
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Default Re: Axolotl Paludarium

I am also looking into making a paludarium for my axolotls. I have been considering some insects for the land portion, maybe a praying mantis or something. That being said, if whatever it was fell in the water, it would almost certainly be munched on. Like you said, having some floating plants may be able to combat it.

As Murk said, hermit crabs might be interesting. You would really need a vertical barrier between the land and water portions though so they wouldn't get into the water. Also they need 72-80 degrees, and axolotls like it cooler! Maybe you could use some heat cables which coil in the soil to heat the upper part of the tank.

I would be nervous to put a tiger salamander in there, or really anything that would be attracted to the water. One of them is likely to get hurt, so unless there's a physical barrier, I think that's risky.

Just thought about this, maybe you could have a "lid" that covers the water portion (of course it would need small holes). That could keep out a frog or something if it fit properly? It would kind of defeat the purpose of looking natural though.

Let us know how it goes!



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