My axolotl has been looking really stressed! Help?

lilyrose08

New member
Joined
Jan 2, 2018
Messages
8
Reaction score
1
Points
0
Age
21
Location
Surrey
Country
United Kingdom
Display Name
Lily
Hi there,

I've had my axolotl for 3 weeks now, he was born in mid December, and he'd been getting along brilliantly and growing by the second! He's in a 15L bare bottom tank with no filter temporarily as he grows up a little, with a couple small hides, a rock and an airstone.

I noticed just yesterday that his gills are extremely curled round! He usually gets a little curly gills during a water change understandably, but within an hour he's back to his normal active swimmy self. But, since yesterdays water change and through all of today his gills are extremely curled round. I know I could be paranoid and worried over nothing but better safe than sorry!
I'll include all the relevant info I can think of below to see if anyone can offer advice to something I could be doing differently.

We do daily almost full water changes and rinse his tank furniture every couple days too. At first I noticed just how stressed he would get when doing water changes because his gills would curl round and sometimes panic swim about, so I adapted how I did it.

Now instead of taking him out the tank to do a full clean every two days we do it every week, but still keeping up his almost full water changes daily. I even use a much smaller tube now to siphon water out and back in again. (It takes ages! But I think it makes a difference in his stress levels)

I feed him frozen bloodworm, up to one and a half cubes a day now he's bigger. I do this with fairly consistent timing.

I cover his tank with cardboard to block out direct light.

He has an airstone in there with him in a corner, on just a little so as not to affect water flow. I added it within the last week to increase oxygen levels after I noticed his consistent swimming to the surface for oxygen, and he recieved it well and as far as I can tell, he's used to it.

Nitrite levels are consistently 0ppm, Nitrate is between 10 and 20ppm (after filtering tap water through a nitrate filter), and this little guy produces up to 0.75-1.0ppm Ammonia in 24 hours between changes!

My 64L tank is almost ready and cycled, and I'm worried it'll prolong the stress if I move him into an entirely new area, with new things like plants and sand, if he'll be more stressed for longer. But at the same time I know that the daily water changes stress him as much as they do, I'm wondering if anything will really change how he's feeling other than consistency.

He's a lovely little energetic cutie, with a very curious side to him. Any advice or opinion that can help me take care of him better is entirely welcome!
Thank you!
 

DSaxolotl

New member
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
115
Reaction score
2
Points
0
Country
Netherlands
Hello,

What is your tank temperature at? Having no filter is bad idea even in a small tank you can go for simple sponge filter or some hang on back. Having ammonia 0.75 to 1ppm is bad. That kind of ammonia will sure stress your axie.

In my opinion the cycled tank should have 0 ammonia at all times, and yours just cant because you do not have filter.

Doing your water changes also helps to dilute it but i would use a filter for best results. Do you use something to treat your water for chor/amines ? API Prime?

Cycled filter will help you to keep ammonia to 0 and will also help you reduce water changes.

Check your temperature that is not too high and invest in a filter!

Btw your axie looks so cute :)
 

lilyrose08

New member
Joined
Jan 2, 2018
Messages
8
Reaction score
1
Points
0
Age
21
Location
Surrey
Country
United Kingdom
Display Name
Lily
Thank you for replying!

The reason I didn't put a filter in this tank is because it was meant to be temporary while my bigger tank cycled, also because he's still so small! You're right though, it's definitely the amount of ammonia he produces so fast! I'm going to move him into the bigger tank as soon as possible, and up my daily cleaning routine.

I'll even update in a few days when he's in :)
 

DSaxolotl

New member
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
115
Reaction score
2
Points
0
Country
Netherlands
You always need working biological filter no mater whatever you are keep or how small it is.

You can keep one little guppie and it will still produce ammonia, keep in mind ammonia is produced from decaying organic matter, including foods, poop, plants etc. And axies are extremely messy. Having ammonia in the water will cause and be source of alot of issues such as skin burns,open door for sickness and other infections.

And remember the smaller the tank is the easiest you can foul your water quality and conditions. Esp in small tank like yours at 15L.

May I suggest something like API Prime for the ammonia and dechlorinating the new water. It is a brilliant product that is concentrated in ~100ml bottle that can treat like 4000l of water and that is ALOT of water changes. All you need is small syringe and add the appropriate amount it when you do a water change. It will help lock down ammonia, nitrates and nitrities for a short amount of time as well as dechlorinate your tap.


Btw can you post picture of your new bigger tank?
 
General chit-chat
Help Users
  • No one is chatting at the moment.
  • 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
    +1
    Unlike
  • Lonewolf:
    ?? I’m new owner to the type of fish
    +1
    Unlike
  • Chat Bot:
    Lonewolf has left the room.
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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.
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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.
    +2
    Unlike
  • 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
    +1
    Unlike
  • Murk:
    That sounds like severe skin damage. If you post a thread on the forum, you can attach pictures.
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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?)
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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?
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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.
    +1
    Unlike
  • Ganaa:
    Anyone here from DMV?
    +1
    Unlike
  • Unlike
  • 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 :)
    +1
    Unlike
  • Ganaa:
    @patrickstar116, do you still have your fire salamanders?
    +1
    Unlike
  • patrickstar116:
    @Ganaa, I do you may message me if you wish
    +1
    Unlike
  • HalfDrunkToast:
    hi.....
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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?
    +1
    Unlike
  • 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.
    +1
    Unlike
    AlexisJG: Does anyone have any idea how to help with high ammonia levels? I have the API freshwater master... +1
    Top