Doubts about my axolotls alimentation.

Magess

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Good day to you!
About a year and 8 months i bought 2 axolotls, lambda and delta. I've had headaches trying to feed them for a looong time. It took a few weeks until i found something they thought it was appealing. They didn't like balanced food, and rarely ate the worms properly. Most of the time, they ended up leaving their mouths and getting lost between the rocks. The solution was giving them minced pork/cow meat, and they seem happy with it. And aside the biweekly change of water, i have to clean after they eat. I've read about force feeding, bit it doesn't sound like a good idea. Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance! Any information i can provide, let me know.
 

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First, I would try to do weekly water changes. I've had a lot more success with that. Second, do you have a testing kit for their water? Water quality and incorrect temperature can cause them to not want to eat.
 

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First, I would try to do weekly water changes. I've had a lot more success with that. Second, do you have a testing kit for their water? Water quality and incorrect temperature can cause them to not want to eat.
Yes, i'm usually careful about the ph and quality of the water. I'll try changing it weekly then. Thank you!
 
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You're welcome. And not to upset you or anything, your axolotls are very different looking for sure. Where did you get them from?
 

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No, it's fine! I got them from a good aquarium, i did look into their species at some point and didn't feel they were particularly weird, would you mind developing that? I'm from Argentina if it helps.
Lambda is a skinny white and blind girl. Delta is a goldish- pigmented chubby and blind girl.
They are quite healty i think, so I'm curious about their being different

Edit: they should be albino axolotls, don't think they are particularly rare
 
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I agree they look quite strange.
Especially the one in front (in the picture) looks off in proportions. Do you maybe have a picture of the axolotl from above?

In general, minced beef and pork is rich in fats and proteins but misses a lot of the other minerals and nutrients the axolotls will need. The easy thing about worms is that they're all-in-one.
Because of the high fat and protein contents, axolotls really love beef, pork, salmon, tuna, etc. - just like humans do. It's fine as a treat every now and then or to fatten them up quickly, but it's not a very good staple food.

You've probably spoiled them a bit now, so getting them to eat other foods might be tough, but I think it's still good to get them a diversified diet. Pellets, worms, fish, shrimp - just to get them used to eating different foods. After that it will be easier to give them a healthy diet.
 
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Magess

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I agree they look quite strange.
Especially the one in front (in the picture) looks off in proportions. Do you maybe have a picture of the axolotl from above?

In general, minced beef and pork is rich in fats and proteins but misses a lot of the other minerals and nutrients the axolotls will need. The easy thing about worms is that they're all-in-one.
Because of the high fat and protein contents, axolotls really love beef, pork, salmon, tuna, etc. - just like humans do. It's fine as a treat every now and then or to fatten them up quickly, but it's not a very good staple food.

You've probably spoiled them a bit now, so getting them to eat other foods might be tough, but I think it's still good to get them a diversified diet. Pellets, worms, fish, shrimp - just to get them used to ezting different foods. After that it will be easier to give them a healthy diet.
Thanks so much for the info. i'll attach some pics in a minute. but knowing that is really helpful. getting them to eat pellets from the start is a nightmare ,they simply don't acknowledge their existence lol. i should try with fish and shrimps too!
 

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Thanks so much for the info. i'll attach some pics in a minute. but knowing that is really helpful. getting them to eat pellets from the start is a nightmare ,they simply don't acknowledge their existence lol. i should try with fish and shrimps too!
This is the best i got at least now, if they move and get in a better position, i'll take more photos
The one with the flash is the one in the front from the previous photo
 

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They certainly are unique but still cute. I didn't know they liked minced meat. Do you like, cook it first or are they a raw food kind of creature?
 

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They certainly are unique but still cute. I didn't know they liked minced meat. Do you like, cook it first or are they a raw food kind of creature?
Thank you, they certainly feel unique to me at least hahaha. So far i've given them raw food, but that's based on my mother suggestions. Supposedly, the cooked food has something that might upset them but she's no profesional
 

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This is the best i got at least now, if they move and get in a better position, i'll take more photos
The one with the flash is the one in the front from the previous photo
Hello :). From the looks of the tank it looks like you have gravel as a substrate. In the first photo of your babies it looks like they have been eating the gravel, leading to impaction. If that is the case, then you need to immediately take out the gravel. Axolotls should never be housed with gravel because of their poor eyesight, they often believe it is food. If impaction has occurred, I believe the proper procedure is to tube them individually and wait for the gravel to pass through. Hope this helps :)
 
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@Vitafluff

Thank you for catching that, I didn't notice it at all till you pointed it out!

Yeah, remove the gravel, either add a nice aquarium freshwater sand or leave it void, they do well on glass bottoms.
 

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The white albino looks impacted on the gravel and emaciated liekly due to the impaction.

All substrate greater than 2mm and less than 4" needs to be removed.

Switch to an aquatic high fat food if at all possible - thawed raw salmon, shrimp or cod. Be sure it was solidly frozen for 30 days prior to kill parasites.
Repashy grub pie is also awesome if available in argentina.

Something about the water is off by the look of the gills as well

what are the following?

temp
ph
gh
kh
ammonia
nitrite
nitrate

how do you treat your water?
 

Magess

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The white albino looks impacted on the gravel and emaciated liekly due to the impaction.

All substrate greater than 2mm and less than 4" needs to be removed.

Switch to an aquatic high fat food if at all possible - thawed raw salmon, shrimp or cod. Be sure it was solidly frozen for 30 days prior to kill parasites.
Repashy grub pie is also awesome if available in argentina.

Something about the water is off by the look of the gills as well

what are the following?

temp
ph
gh
kh
ammonia
nitrite
nitrate

how do you treat your water?
Thank you for the info!
I'll see what i can do about the salmon and check for the other options you said, regarding the grills i read in another post that shrinkened grills might be due to a well oxygenated water. But might be wrong. About the grub pie it's the first time i hear about it so i'll check.
The water temp is 16, but on hot days it might go up to 20 and i use a frosen bottle of water to cool it.
Ph is between 6.6-6.8, i can't diferentiate the colors well, i checked a few days ago.
I use tap water, but as instructed i dechlorificate it for about 12 hs.
The other substances i don't know hlw to test them, but should be normal.
 

Calgarycoppers

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Your pH is way too low so you likely need to harden your water as well.

How are you dechlorinating?

the oxygenation is not the case here.

Do you have access to Freshwater testing kits - liquid not strips?
gh/kh is a separate test kit - its your general hardness and carbonate hardness which I believe is low in your tank.

Tubbed and fridged isnt a bad idea for a few hours not long term. 8-10 degrees is the lowest you want to go for impaction. lower slows everything down.

Thank you for the info!
I'll see what i can do about the salmon and check for the other options you said, regarding the grills i read in another post that shrinkened grills might be due to a well oxygenated water. But might be wrong. About the grub pie it's the first time i hear about it so i'll check.
The water temp is 16, but on hot days it might go up to 20 and i use a frosen bottle of water to cool it.
Ph is between 6.6-6.8, i can't diferentiate the colors well, i checked a few days ago.
I use tap water, but as instructed i dechlorificate it for about 12 hs.
The other substances i don't know hlw to test them, but should be normal.
 

Magess

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Your pH is way too low so you likely need to harden your water as well.

How are you dechlorinating?

the oxygenation is not the case here.

Do you have access to Freshwater testing kits - liquid not strips?
gh/kh is a separate test kit - its your general hardness and carbonate hardness which I believe is low in your tank.

Tubbed and fridged isnt a bad idea for a few hours not long term. 8-10 degrees is the lowest you want to go for impaction. lower slows everything down.
not that i want to contradict you, but want to understand, i've read around here that that ph was alright, and for impactation how long should i put it on the fridge? i've seen at least a post about someone setting them inside for 2 weeks. but i guess they meant every day for 2 weeks.
about the ph test kit yes, it was a liquid one not strips.
how would you recommend i deal with gh/kh defitiency?


Constipated/impacted axolotl that's the post i've been basing a bit my care
 

Calgarycoppers

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I take my information from both exotic veterinarians and the research labs that have been housing, studying and breeding axolotls for decades.

pH - While 6.5-8 is acceptable range for axolotls - optimal is 7.4-7.6
KH - 3-8 degrees
GH - 7-14 degrees (124.6-249.2 mg/L) they prefer somewhat harder water.

I have an exotic veterinarian I have continually consulted regarding my protocols of how, when and what to treat with.
With the preventatives I use such as water parameters and additives I have almost no issues in my breed stock. My surrenders, rescues and palliative crew have occasional issues from previous neglect which my protocols work like a charm on.

I have dealt with gravel impaction, severe constipation and severe emaciation.

Are you testing for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate at all?
pH alone does not tell us the state of your nitrogen cycle.

GH/KH issues varies as to which one or both you are dealing with.
It means adding different things or combinations.

By all means follow posts. I was sharing what I have always been advised by the Vet and other long long term hobbyists including our original breeders here in my province who have been my mentors.

not that i want to contradict you, but want to understand, i've read around here that that ph was alright, and for impactation how long should i put it on the fridge? i've seen at least a post about someone setting them inside for 2 weeks. but i guess they meant every day for 2 weeks.
about the ph test kit yes, it was a liquid one not strips.
how would you recommend i deal with gh/kh defitiency?


Constipated/impacted axolotl that's the post i've been basing a bit my care
 
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    Hi Nerdybirds - open a thread, that usually gets more views and also allows you to post pictures and give more background information: water parameters, age, etc.
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    My axolotl can you all take a look at that thread, I am freaked out about my axie
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    His gills seem kinda small, I don't think that's normal but I'm not a huge expert on axolotls
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    Yeah his gills is kinda small and it can be caused by nitrate level, I am taking care of it atm, I am worried about his weight, is he only overfed or are there any kinds of problems there ?
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    Well, again, I'm no expert. But I did just read axolotls are supposed to have a body about as wide as their head. The gills I'd say are the biggest problem, which could reduce oxygen intake, which could make a whole mess of problems.
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    Thanks for the help then, I will deal with his gills in no time
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  • EmilyP:
    Hi LauraLobster I am a new owner of axolotls myself and have been getting advice from things like this, I feed mine twice a day on blackworms and brine shrimp blood worms are more of a treat food, a question on where you are keeping you axolotl are you keeping it in the main tank or in a tub also if in the tank did you cycle it first? and if not i suggest tubing it until the tank it cycled, mine are still tubed since I was given bad advice by the shop people about cycling my tank and am still in the process of cycling it. I use pipettes to clean up the mess of my axolotls. I use the API mater test kit for freshwater tanks I am also a student and had to look around to find it the cheapest I could.
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    Hi LauraLobster, like you I got my first ever Axolotl back in July. Iv found that he has enjoyed and eaten red wigglers well. They are a good source of protein and help provide the nutrients a young lotl needs to grow up big and strong. You will probably need to break it up into smaller pieces until they get bigger but they are what I have primarily fed my buddy since I got him. He’s actually so picky that he won’t even eat his pellets anymore and will hold out till he gets his favorite wormy.
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    As long as its cleaned yeah! You can even make overhangs if you have enough pieces to make nice caves and platforms
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    Ok, thanks!
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    My pleasure! River rocks work well too, and go rather well with all kinda lung less salamanders,
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    Great! I'll use some of those too. Thanks for the help. :)
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