New Axolotl eating habit... is he unwell?

M

matt

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Hello again,


Just wanted to mention a new behaviour my much-prized golden Albino axolotl is now exhibiting - to my concern.

Basically, he has suddenly started spitting out worms previously ingested. Until recently his appetite for worms was enormous. The first time he did it I thought he had at last learned the idea of "enough already"!

Since then he has not kept one worm, his former favourite, down. He seems otherwise healthy, alert and active (for an axolotl...) although his appetite is a little reduced.

He is mostly eating daphnia at the moment, something I thought would be too small to notice. I guess he can't live on that forever. I'm hoping to get some of his second favourite food, bloodworm, this week, as a test. I tried him this evening with the worms again - two eagerly devoured, then thrown back up.

MY QUESTIONS:
*Is this anything to worry about?
*Could I have "damaged" him with other food stuffs in the run-up to the time when he started to do this? He had a small ball of tubifex (which I know can be oily / bad for the liver) and a small wax moth larva (which took a lot of spitting out and sucking back in.)
*The habit started after I tried him with three garden, not mail-order, worms. Two were eaten - then he spat out his first (and hasn't stopped).
Significant?

Thanks for any ideas or reassurance.
 
J

john

Guest
In my experience it is possible for a spoilt axolotl to get sick of one particular food. Starving them a bit seems to change their mind though. If they're not very hungry, they sometimes will eat something and then spit it out later on. That might be the problem - are you feeding it very often?
 
M

matt

Guest
Maybe... I thought he was eating a lot, but read here that they are voracious eaters.

I have been feeding every 48 hours, around 6 medium to large earthworms.

Even on the days that I wasn't feeding he was looking expectantly at the corner of the surface where he is fed, especially (or did I imagine it?!) if I was making some sort of noise nearby (eg tanklids opening.)

He has just eaten and then thrown up another two earthworms. However, I didn't have time to siphon them out the tank this morning before work; when I returned, to do the job, they had gone (errrrh!).

Anyway, thanks for the reassurance. Will continue to offer alternatives, starve for a bit, and then try again.
 

morg

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I dont keep axolotls myself, but had the same problem with a sharp ribbed newt.
It turned out that this happened whenever I gave him a certain type of garden earthworm,the yellowish coloured ones that I used to find whilst digging .
He would always throw them up after a while.
Any other worms including brandling worms he was alright with though.
This may be completely non related to your problem, but I thought I'd mention it incase.
 
M

matt

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Hi again Morg (hope u r well)

YES! YES! YES!
The reason I mentioned the garden worm thing in my original post...

[*The habit started after I tried him with three garden, not mail-order, worms. Two were eaten - then he spat out his first (and hasn't stopped).
Significant?]

... was that I thought something was not right around that time. The third garden worm I fed - the first to come back up - was a very strange yellow colour.

Great detective work, Morg - cheers!!!
 

dln

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The 3 garden worms may be the key. My tigers for example like nightcrawlers but hate red worms. Another thought and possible problem is if you dug them up in your garden, have you used any fertilizer or insecticides in your garden? Either would be bad for your axolotl and could possibly put it off worms for a while. Have you tried pellet food?
 
M

matt

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Yeh - the garden pesticide thing did occur to me too. One of the worms was gathered from a patch of garden a stone's throw away from another patch of ground that was treated with a (supposedly rapidly decomposing) weedkiller a year ago. (As if worms can't travel...!)

I have read another recent thread, about the effects of parts-per-trillion, so it may be an explanation, sadly. (Makes you wonder about just how much damage just one person can do to the local environment.)

(I'm keen to avoid dry, pelleted food - a breeder I trust warned me off it, although it seems popular enough in the States.)

Thanks for your thoughts.
 
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  • MuggleMiChu:
    Help! I got my first axolotl two days ago and they have stopped eating. They ate a few frozen blood worms the first day and haven’t eaten or been interested in food since. I feed them frozen blood worms and the tank is around 64 degrees. I do have a filter that moves sometimes and I noticed them swimming up to it, I have a new filter and a fan coming today or tomorrow. I leave the worms in the tank or a little bit before taking them out so I don’t know if they ate when I wasn’t looking. I know it takes a while for them to digest. Does anyone have any tips or knowledge they can share? The pet store I bought them from didn’t have gravel or sand in the tank so I’m not sure if theres an issue or if I’m just impatient. Thank you!
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    @MuggleMiChu, how big they are? also for substrate, i would not do gravel at all I would either do sand or none at all!
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  • MuggleMiChu:
    They are about 2-3 inches long and I have them in a bare bottom tank
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    @MuggleMiChu I would say try live black/blood worms untell they are full or just turn there head away ( that's what mine do) if that does not work try to get some live brine shrimp and see if they eat that. baby axolotl prefer live food over frozen food as the frozen food is too cold for them or they can't eat it in one go( that's if you do the blocks) mine eat chopped up frozen thawed shrimp. as for them not eating from what I have experienced with my second axolotl, I got her when she was about an inch long and she ate every day, when they start getting 3-4 inches long they will gradually slow down there eating. and if you really want to do substrate I would do sand because if they do ingest a little bit it won't hurt them.
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    Thank you so much for the information and advice! They are eating again, they ate a lot today. I think it might have been stress from the move or digesting old food, I also noticed they ate some of the food left in the tank (I removed the rest). I’m going to keep the tank bare bottom.
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    @MuggleMiChu,your so welcome im glad to be of help! and I'm glad that they are eating as well!
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