Axilotl finding and Hello

loglady007

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HI. I am new to this forum. I live in Colorado. I have found a cache of axilotl's in a pool, that has been abandoned for about 7 years or so. It has a cover and has grown algae plants that are about 4 feet tall. The pool is nearby - My daughter and her friend were exploring and one day noticed a strange creature- when they lifted part of a buttoned down pool cover that had come undone. They came home to report it, and I went there myself to have a look-see. I caught one in a net. The neighbor girl searched for what it could be. She found the description as an axolotl. From Mexico. We could only imagine at the moment, that perhaps someone had dumped an aquarium with a pair in to the pool. And we wondered about things like- how have these creatures survived winters in Colorado? Several months later (recently) we decided to let my daughter do a report on axilotl's for school. We thought we had the whole story- with research, and had information in it, such as "There are only about an estimated 700 left in the wild" We found out scientists were interested in them because of there regenerative properties. We knew they were rare , except what was found in captivity. We started thinking about calling a conservation group (still on my mind), in the interest of saving- who knows how many, in the pool. (100? More?- probably)
And then this story took a twist. Three days ago we went back to the pool to scoop up a couple for the report and show and tell effort. It had just snowed, and there was only one to be seen, since I couldn't reach down four or so feet with my arm and a net, we decided to return the following day. This time we saw 7 out in the open, and saw a few on the other side of the pool. There are only two places that the cover was loose and ineffectual, on opposite sides of the pool. We captured 2 in one area. And 1 on the other side. And then a funny thing happened on the way to the forum...(har, har- literal though)We spotted the oddest one we had ever seen. We both agreed that the marking looked like a tiger. It was swimming along the bottom green algae and didn't look like any we had seen to date It was in two feet of water (shallow side of pool that had opening) and I had to wait patiently for it to get closer to the side of the pool. When it finally did, I was able to reach out with my arm at full extension and capture it. I discovered pretty quickly that it was like the others, but didn't have gills. I wondered whether to keep it in the water with the others or not. We took it home. All four creatures. I wondered at the makeup. It is then where I find this story to take a different turn. I looked up Tiger Salamander (because it had Tiger stripes) I then found video's on line about "axilotls" and how they were supposed to be kin of Tiger Salamander's. I found video's of "mud puppies" (which looked Identical to axilotls) I looked up Tiger Salamander's in Colorado. Turns out they are the state's amphibian. (not so rare?) I learned that Tiger Salamanders lay eggs in the water and the large (6 and 7" "axilotl's" were larvae of the salamander's. That they are in fact - one in the same.) News to me. I found a conservation number and called someone in Wisconsin about it. He had interesting information about how the larvae don't change in to Tiger Salamanders at times. I saw that information about neoteny, before I called him- and he confirmed that if fish were absent, that this was usual, especially in a pond without fish (which is what we had in the pool environment) I found out that these larvae are everywhere in the United States (through Youtube videos) They are called Mudpuppies, Water Dogs, Mexican Walking Fish, Axilotl's- to me they all are the same, or at least Larvae of the Tiger Salamander. Not just related, and sometimes mate - but do mate- because they are the same creature. All very interesting. At any rate. Are these Tiger Salamanders really all that rare? If so - I think I hit the mother lode in one location and want to see what I can do to save them- there could be 100's in this pool. Soon the pool will be sold to a new owner and change is coming soon. They are starting to build homes all around. I am concerned for their fate. I also feel that perhaps they are common? I don't see the difference between what I saw as samples of larvae, as different from what seems to be found around the U.S.A. Maybe someone here knows better than me.
Happy to meet some Herpsters. I spent a lot of time in my native Maine, where I grew up, hunting salamanders- so I do have a special fondness for them.
 

Otterwoman

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Wow, that’s quite an interesting story. I don’t know how rare they are, but we’d love to see pictures!
 

loglady007

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My pictures are on my phone. I will see what I can do to get them on here.
 
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  • Lonewolf:
    Ok I’m new so I have a pink Axolotl and it’s a baby like two three max inches and it eats from the top and it has now been floating a while now should I be worried ?? The other one is at the bottom of the tank and the tail isint hoocked or the gills aren’t curved flowerd they seem relaxed
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  • Lonewolf:
    ?? I’m new owner to the type of fish
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    Lonewolf has left the room.
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  • Lanalotl:
    Hi I recently rescued a lotl (i did weeks of research before rescuing) Hes mabey 5 or 6 years of age..the previous owner could not remember the exact age of him. I got him from her as he was or had been picked on by his tank mate another lotl who was bough with him from every younger age, I noticed one of his gills, a middle one at the end had split in two? And is slightly more floppy? He also appears or mabey I'm just over worried to mabey have lost some feathers, is that normal to lose some?...all levels in the tank are fine, but wondered if theres and advice anyone could give me as an experienced owner to a new one.
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  • Axolotl Queen:
    @Lanalotl Sounds like the gills may have been nipped by the tank mate. If he is in his own tank and the parameters etc are all good, then he should grow them back and they should go back to full health and strength. However, depending on how old the injury is they may not fully grow back if they have been constantly nipped at.
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  • Smknmom421:
    Can anyone tell me why this is happening? We just did a water change and after freaking out and whipping around the tank, an hour later they look like this. It won't let me send a pic. The edges of their gills are white and it looks like they have skin shedding off
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  • Murk:
    That sounds like severe skin damage. If you post a thread on the forum, you can attach pictures.
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  • Murk:
    It sounds like something went wrong with the water change, so this could be very dangerous. Did you use a dechlorinator? Could it be there are traces of chlorine or soap in the water? (Or for example, in the bucket you used?)
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  • Murk:
    Normally, I would recommend taking them out of the tank asap and putting them in a tub with fresh water, but if there's something wrong with your tap water or dechlorinator, that might not help either. Do you have acces to bottled water or rain water?
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  • Sal22:
    I think my axie is dying, he’s never had any issues before, I’ve had him 3 years, today I noticed some fluffy looking stuff coming from his genital area so I took him out of his tank and did a full tank clean to make sure the water wasn’t infected as I thought it was fungus and then I noticed he had a cut on his belly which was only small about 5 hours ago and now it’s spread to all of his belly, what do I do I’m freaking out
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  • Sal22:
    Update about my axie, unfortunately he has died over night, he looked as if he was bruised allover his belly, his mucus layer had also started to come off.
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  • Ganaa:
    Anyone here from DMV?
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  • AlexisJG:
    Hi I have 2 4in juveniles (I’ve had them about 2 weeks and they are doing well I think they’ve grown a little already honestly) but I am supposed to go on a 5-6 day vacation in October about 3-4 months from now. I am wondering how I should go about their care when I am gone. I thought about putting them in separate (fairly big) containers with live plants and/or bubblers with a fan in the dark and either fridging them (my last plan) but I am hoping to to either have someone I trust come feed them and turkey baste waste out or just leave them out and clean the containers before we leave and have someone come check on them once or twice. Does any of this sound like a good or bad idea? I want the best for them. All help appreciated :)
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  • Ganaa:
    @patrickstar116, do you still have your fire salamanders?
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  • patrickstar116:
    @Ganaa, I do you may message me if you wish
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  • HalfDrunkToast:
    hi.....
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  • JDeslippe21:
    Hi, so I have 2 male axolotls and about an hour ago they were both perfectly fine and now only one of them has his tail curling up and his gills are slightly curled?? But other than that they’re both acting normally
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  • Murk:
    Could be he's just excited, spooked or temporarily stressed, which could pass in a few hours. It could also be an indicator of other problems. Do you have any recent water parameters?
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  • AlexisJG:
    Does anyone have any idea how to help with high ammonia levels? I have the API freshwater master kit and everything else’s test results were great besides ammonia. I did a 50% water change and I use API products including ammonia lock.
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    AlexisJG: Does anyone have any idea how to help with high ammonia levels? I have the API freshwater master... +1
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