Question: Is my new axolotl stressed?

axobowie

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Hey, all! I've just recently gotten a new axolotl and ever since then, I've had an ammonia spike that won't go away. It's fluctuating between .25ppm and .50ppm, which I know 50ppm isn't good at all. The pet store told me it could be because I am now housing two in my 20 long and the filter is not used to that yet. I have been keeping an eye on both of them but I noticed that my little one's tail is curved and I'm not sure if the little one's gills are curled forward. Big one seems fine and they're both eating. I've been using prime and stability to lower the toxic ammonia while I introduced a new Fluval filter with 3 pieces of media! I'm doing 25% water changes daily and testing my water every day... I'm not sure what caused this. My other readings for the water are fine! What do you recommend to do from here? I'm stressing out! I need some answers. :(
 

Otterwoman

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I can't imagine how the ammonia stays high if you're doing water changes every day.
 

debadog

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Hey, all! I've just recently gotten a new axolotl and ever since then, I've had an ammonia spike that won't go away. It's fluctuating between .25ppm and .50ppm, which I know 50ppm isn't good at all. The pet store told me it could be because I am now housing two in my 20 long and the filter is not used to that yet. I have been keeping an eye on both of them but I noticed that my little one's tail is curved and I'm not sure if the little one's gills are curled forward. Big one seems fine and they're both eating. I've been using prime and stability to lower the toxic ammonia while I introduced a new Fluval filter with 3 pieces of media! I'm doing 25% water changes daily and testing my water every day... I'm not sure what caused this. My other readings for the water are fine! What do you recommend to do from here? I'm stressing out! I need some answers. :(
Bit concerned how you say "little one" and "big one", there shouldn't be more than an inch difference between their sizes. Is that the case? I wouldn't be surprised if the little one was stressed if it was much smaller as it will definitely be attacked and picked on by the bigger one, especially as the tank isn't very big for two axolotls.

You won't be wanting to house 2 in a 20 long for very long, you'll need a 30 gallon minimum really. 20 long is the size for one adult.

Prime/stability etc. do not do anything in my experience and are a waste of time using, the only thing that works is to do large water changes daily, which it sounds like you're doing. Something has happened that has restarted the cycle so you might be dealing with this problem for a while, and there is a concern that it will make your little guys sick. Try doing a 50% change instead and see what happens to the ammonia levels.

As for whether they are stressed, pictures will help us to tell. Is the whole tail curved or just the tip? Its only when the very tip is curled that theres a problem.
 
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    As long as they don’t seem stressed that’s good and I mean hey if their well fed maybe they’ll live long happy lives together.
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