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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    @ChocoUniversa, Buy some ammonia and an eyedropper from Walmart and a water test kit for ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. Figure out (through testing) how many drops it will take to get the ammonia level to the test's maximum measurement. Add that same number of drops every 24 hours. Eventually, the ammonia will start to go down as it's converted to nitrites. Keep adding ammonia. The nitrite levels will spike for a while and then they too will start to go down as they convert to nitrates. These you get rid of by doing water changes, which you should be doing anyway throughout the process. Once all of these are at low levels, your aquarium is ready. It takes about a month, maybe two (mine took a month and a half). Be sure to add ammonia until the day of or the day before you add your axolotl.
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    Hey guys, this is my first time using this so bear with me. I have an adult axie who looks like he’s developed some fungus on gills. It’s still really small and only on one part. I put him in a 10 gal quarantine tank with an Indian almond leaf. I want to give him a black tea bath but not sure if I can add my black tea to the tank with the Indian almond leaf in there. Any advice?
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    Hi, My axolotl has just started morphing, but has some fungal spot behind the gill.
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    Should I fridge therapy and salt wash? or will this not be wise when she is morphing.
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    Need help identifying what’s wrong with my axolotl
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    @BChen3695, what are your parameters and temp? The fact that they're raised bumps could indicate fungus or bacterial infection.
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    Hi! I have recently gotten a spotted salamander. Did some research and found lots of info, but just wondering if they brumate in captivity! Thank you to anyone who can answer this ☺
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    Hello its urgent!
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  • Pookisoo:
    I have a tiger salamander and i got him as a gift , recently it looks like something has been eating at his tail! Almost like its dissolving..? Ive checked that there is no other bugs in the closure, ive also ben giving him salt baths but its inly getting worse. Sorry if its much hahaha im just super worried!😓
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    Hi @Pookisoo it seems to be a fungal disease
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  • MVM1991:
    @XxJennXx, I don't believe so. They are closely related to tigers and my tiger doesn't brumate. I think first year they might but after they see they aren't needing to, they should be good. They might try and hibernate to, mine did for the first year but now I see him crawling around right now.
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    @MVM1991, ok thanks :)
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    @afmtgn, is there anything i can do about it?
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  • RG:
    @Pookisoo, The refrigerator is a good hospital for tigers.Temperature between 7 and 2 degrees Celsius can stop bacteria. If necessary or if you dare 0 to -2 can also help.Reduce the temperature in a few days from 7 degrees to 2. After that you can reduce further. Feel free to let it sit for a few weeks. Place the animal in a plastic container with a lid with some air holes. Fill it with some soil and / or leaves. Check regularly whether there is still moisture or ice in this container. At temperatures above 2 degrees, they do not go into hibernation. They will then live on their reserves. Doing nothing is not an option, I speak from experience. You can avoid these kinds of problems by keeping them fairly dry for much of the year.
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    Hi guys! I’m new to this site and a new axolotl owner. I’ve had my baby (his name is toothpick) for about a month or so now. I finally got a water testing kit and I tested the perimeters earlier today. My ammonia was at 3 ppm and my nitrite was at 2 ppm. This freaked me out because I know they are supposed to be at 0 ppm. I did a water change a little bit ago and it went down to ammonia 1 ppm and in between 1-2 ppm nitrate. I change 50% of my water weekly and clean up any pieces of waste or excess food with a turkey bastwr everyday. Could this just be because the tank isn’t fully cycled yet? Should I be concerned? Toothpick hasn’t shown any signs of distress
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    @RG, yeah.. im a new owner and i thought just giving salt baths would work, Thank you so much for this tho!🤗
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    Sorry again... but when i take him out is he supposed to be moving funny..? Sorry hahaha🤕
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  • madcaplaughs:
    @Paige1warren You need to tub your axolotl and perform 100% daily water changes. Your tank is not fully cycled, and any readings of ammonia or nitrite are toxic and potentially deadly. A fully cycled tank should at all times have readings of 0ppm ammonia/0ppm nitrite/0pmm<nitrate.
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    madcaplaughs: @Paige1warren You need to tub your axolotl and perform 100% daily water changes. Your tank is... +1
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