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A. Texanum revisited

philv

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Got some new updates and concerns.

This little guy stopped eating easily a month and a half ago. He molted about 2 weeks ago, and still hasn't accepted anything (though I haven't managed to find small earthworms, his former easy meal).. however he's grown considerably in diameter between his head and tail since the molting, and I'm not sure if it's a natural change. He's quite soft, and comically proportioned. He ate what I thought at the time to be a lot for his size, especially considering his fasting since, further making this increase in size alarming.

Here's where he started end of April..
tacoskinny.jpg


And Here's where he's at today..
tacofat.jpg


I've also got a few nice shots of him molting if anyone's interested.
 

Mark

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Hi Phil, your salamander almost certainly has "bloat", a condition which can be caused by a number of factors. Have a read of this article for more information and some treatment ideas: http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/bloatEDK.shtml

Normally the prognosis in these cases is sadly bleak.
 

philv

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I'm reading that the condition can be caused by starvation and heat exposure?

These are 2 very strong possibilities, as we're in record temps and the habitat could be well over 80 degree's at times. Starvation, I'd think is possible, as he hasn't eaten in quite a while.

Understanding that kidney failure and bacterial infections probably mean death, I'd be willing to try to treat for the other conditions. I'm crossing my fingers, as it sounds like kidney failure can show in the neck, and that's not presently the case. Going to try some pet supply shops for small worms (last couple forays into the yard came up empty).

wonder if I should try refrigeration treatment, in case it's heat.
 

Mark

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I don’t think that starvation is the cause - I'm assuming you have offered it food in the past 6 weeks. Heat stress or bacterial infection are more likely and failure to feed would have been a sign of this. How long ago did the bloat start? Treating for a bacterial infection may be dangerous if you don’t know which strain it is or you use the wrong antibiotic. Someone like Ed may spot this and give you advice on a ringers solution you could use to reduce the swelling (there’s a recipe at the bottom of the bloat article) but I have no experience of this. It would make the animal more comfortable and possibly give it more time to recover from an infection or kidney damage. If the damage is irreversible there’s not a great amount you can do… The fridge may be an option if you can't keep the temperature down. Cooling a animal may slow the progression of some bacterial infections but I'm not sure what affect it will have on kidney damage. Possibly none.

*Amphibian Ringer's Solution
Amphibian Ringer's is made by thoroughly mixing the following in one litre of distilled/reverse osmosis or deionized water:
Sodium chloride (NaCl) 6.6 grams
Potassium chloride (KCl) 0.15 grams
Calcium chloride (CaCl2) 0.15 grams
Sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3) 0.2 grams
The salts will need to be thoroughly stirred to ensure that all salts are well dissolved.
 

philv

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I've been offering the only commercial food available to me locally, mealworms.. but he's never accepted them. I seem to recall that some critters stop feeding before a molting though, and he was only offered one more shortly after the molting (little over a week ago) that he left to die. Though the carcass was torn in half when I went to remove it.

This has been developing for about a week now.
 

Jennewt

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Just out of curiosity, what kind of setup were you keeping him in? It's unusual for a terrestrial animal to get bloat.

I would recommend baitshop worms, cut into pieces. Being in Tennessee, I suspect there is no shortage of shops selling bait. Try the fishing dept at Walmart, for example.

May I use your photo on Caudata Culture?
 

philv

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absolutely, you may use the photo's. I have a few really nice one's of the molting process as well if you're interested. Smallmouth Molting

I've kept him in a plastic critter keeper since april on wet paper towels sculpted into features/hides. It's about 10 or 12" wide by 6-8" deep, maybe 10" tall with a well ventilated top.

On a side note, all of the baitshop worms around here are massive nightcrawlers, with diameters close tot he size of his mouth. I tried him on some backyard catches of this size, cut relatively short, but I felt they were still large because of diameter. He refused these bits and they were removed after going bad. This was about a month before he molted, and almost 2 weeks after his previous feeding.. so it could've simply been because of the molting.

!Update!

I relocated the cage to the floor, right beside an ac vent, which is keeping the cage extremely cool. He moved from his former favorite end to the cooled end, and ate a fresh mealworm I offered this afternoon. The bloat has also reduced noticeably. I'm very optimistic about the rapid improvement in appetite and appearance.
 
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Jennewt

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The shedding photos are cool, thanks for posting. I'm glad there is sign of improvement, that's encouraging. If possible, try to give the animal a moisture gradient so it can choose how wet/dry it wants to be. An environment on the less-wet side may help.

I've had good luck feeding large nightcrawlers to small terrestrial sals by chopping them into pieces and leaving the pieces inside the animal's hiding place. For a really small sal, I'll pick out the smallest nightcrawlers I can find in the container. Then, as you did, I remove the uneaten pieces so they don't rot. The "tip" pieces of the worm will continue to wiggle for quite a while. See:
http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/worms2.shtml
 
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  • Shane_Yogurt:
    yeah, im heading over tomorrow morning to move him to this house and feed him. Thanks for the help!
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  • Shane_Yogurt:
    So my axolotl tank cycle just crashed and while i was in the middle of a water change my bucket overflowed and spilled water all of the ground in my brand new home. This is going super well 👍
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    ooff
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    good luck recycling the tank!
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    do the classifieds still exist?
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    nevermind! off my game tonight
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  • Shane_Yogurt:
    Im so frustrated right now. My axolotl WONT eat and my tank still isnt looking too good. Some extra stress i needed.
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  • John:
    Sorry to hear that Shane. Did you post about it?
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  • Shane_Yogurt:
    No, I havent. Im not really sure why he wont eat. Hes in a 1 gallon tub and still a juvenile. When i offer food he swims away from it. Does he need some extra time? or is this something I should be worried about.
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  • JulMl:
    Hello everyone! I’m new in this world and i need some advices please! I have 2 axolotl babies and currently the water from the tank is from bottled water ( all parameters are good) but i want to change 50% of the water with city tap water. My question is how to change it? Do i need to get axis out, do the change, add the prime, wait (how much?) until its dechlorinated or i can add the tap water directly into the tank with axis in it, and add the prime conditioner? Thank you!!
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  • Asmold1:
    1. You dont need to take them out of the tank to change the water as long as you pour it in slow as to not rattle them around too much
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  • Asmold1:
    2. add the prime to your tap water, for most conditioners the consensus is 5 minutes of waiting time
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    3.After 5 minutes it should be safe to add
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  • JulMl:
    Thank you so much !!
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  • Asmold1:
    I private messaged you a bit clearer instructions just in case
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  • tammyaxie:
    Where can I get blackworms?
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    Ebay or Eastern Aquatics
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    Does anyone know someone who can ship axolotls to hawaii? I recently did a water change and my axolotl died and there are no axos for sale right now.
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  • Sylvia88:
    Hello I'm wondering if fridging axolotl is necessary when giving it a salt bath? My fridge is unpredictable it just changes from freezing temperature to melting by itself. And driving me crazy. So I would not be keen to put my axie in these because of the sudden temperature changes it may experience. Can I leave him in a clean dechlorinated water tub in some of the room? Would I then need to refrigerate the salt water ? Or would I just keep it in a same room temperature?! I have everything ready for him to get a salt bath but just wanted to check about this fridging before I do ( waited for approval to join the forum:)
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  • Sylvia88:
    FYI I noticed a white fluffy strings on his gills yesterday. And looking through the forum and some pictures it looks like fungus .
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    Sylvia88: FYI I noticed a white fluffy strings on his gills yesterday. And looking through the forum and... +1
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