New Axolotl Owner: Food, Tank, and Paranoia’!

mgbella

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I’ve had my axolotl for three days. They were born 9/30/20 and were previously fed blackworms, bits of European night crawlers, and small pellets. My little axie is 3-4” and I’ve been feeding it half an ice cube of bloodworms everyday as recommended by the pet store. They eat most of the bloodworms, but not all. I noticed that their body width is smaller than their head and they look skinny. (a)It took them around 1 day to get here and I was just wondering if I need to feed them more blood worms or if they’ll eventually pick up on food and are just stressed from the move.

(b) I will not be feeding them blood worms forever, I’m planning on getting tongs and earthworms or European night crawlers to feed. I was wondering which one is most recommended out of the two. Also, how much do I know to feed it?

(c) I try my best to pick up all the leftover bloodworms with a small net but there’s always a few little “dots” of the food floating at the bottom. I feel bad leaving the dots there until I end up cleaning the tank next Friday. It makes me worry about the ammonia.

So I am currently using Fluval Cycle. I’m on Day 3 for the water. I added the axolotl the first day. It said “add immediately” and I didn’t know if I had to wait until the three days were over. I actually was caught off guard by how fast the axolotl got here so I’m worried that I’m not doing it right. I care so much for my new axie and I’m worried about practically everything. I am going to get water tests today for the ammonia and other bacteria. I was also wondering what the GH and KH levels should be for axolotls. If the levels are not what they should be, I will for sure be removing them from the tank and be using containers and changing the water for them everyday. Please let me know what I would have to do with the tank water. Any tips for the containers would be great. (I like to prepare for the worst, I’m soo worried haha.) For the Fluval Cycle, one person reccomended to someone to only do the 1-3 day New Tank Syndrome cycle. They said that the good bacteria should be fine and that the weekly add-in was unnecessary. By doing the weekly thing, the person asking for advice had white stuff that was probably from the weekly add-in. Should I not do the weekly add-in like they suggested?

(e) Since I am going to start feeding my axie worms with tongs, how do I get it to comply? My axie so far has been shy and a little skittish. But overall super cute! It absolutely loves moving in tight spaces around the plants that are against the glass. It’s so adorable! I noticed that as some axies develop, they don’t engage with food. Just wondering if anybody has tips on that starting out.

Sometimes my axie just doesnt move. I was wondering if this was normal too. Since I’ve only had it for three days, I’m sure it will be more active and will move more. Just wondering if that was normal behavior. They swim very fast away from the net when I use it. They’re very fast at swimming and it’s so cute when they do move. Temps are 60, which is pretty good. The sponge filter connected to the air pump does move the water a bit from the bubbles. Hopefully that doesn’t stress it out either. Bare bottom tank.

Anyways! Sorry I’m so paranoid after such few time. I’m very new to this.
I did a lot of research but missed a few things and thought asking from experienced people would be the best option!
C2B319AD-AFC4-4C01-B267-AEF139FFEAE1.jpeg
 

minorhero

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The way you describe it, it sounds like you did not cycle your tank before adding the axolotl? And are now relying entirely on the bottled bacteria?

If that's not the case then ignore this, but if that is the case you will want to immediately test your water for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate using a liquid test kit (not strips). If your readings are more then zero for ammonia and nitrite you should let us know. I believe the usual advice is to tub the critter in a separate container doing 100% water changes every day till the tank cycles. But I admit my background is almost entirely with fish as I do not have an axolotl.
 

mgbella

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Yeah, I am relying entirely on the bottled bacteria. I am going to head to the store today to get the tests, I’m new to this whole thing if I’m being completely honest. Do i change the tanks water as well when it’s cycling?
 

minorhero

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Yeah, I am relying entirely on the bottled bacteria. I am going to head to the store today to get the tests, I’m new to this whole thing if I’m being completely honest. Do i change the tanks water as well when it’s cycling?
Changing water in a cycling tank is actually something that some people do and some people don't. I believe in doing it normally (for me that's 50% each week). This works for me to keep the algae down, but some folks leave them alone. Since you have plants (live plants correct?) and are probably either adding fertilizer or have a nutrient rich substrate I'd definitely keep doing normal water changes while cycling.
 

mgbella

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Thank you for the advice! They’re actually fake plants but I’ll probably do the 50% either way just to be on the safe side in case I have to end up waiting awhile. It’s the third day of the Fluval Cycle and it says “add fish immediately” but yeah, if the liquid test says otherwise, I’ll definitely end up with containers and doing 100% water changes. What kind of containers do you recommend? I don’t want my lotl to be able to jump out and get hurt at all.
 
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  • madcaplaughs:
    @MadamePirateOwl Fridging is best left to life-or-death situations, and salt baths are unnecessarily harsh, stressful, and abrasive. I'd suggest doing tea baths instead (using caffeinated black tea, where the only ingredient is black tea).
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    so no idea what the goop is?
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  • madcaplaughs:
    Hard to tell without a photo, but might be algae or fungus floating. Water changes will take care of that.
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    It definitely came from the axolotl. Looked to be mixed into poo the first time. Can I post the photos here?
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    Im not actually sure how i would post it. It seems to want a link
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    Its fairly thick and chunky
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    (Also thanks for your patience and help!)
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  • madcaplaughs:
    You could always upload the photo to imgur and link it back here
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    The second image was how it looked the first time, it was mixed with some other poop like stuff. after that its been small and without the poopy stuff
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  • madcaplaughs:
    The second photo looks reminiscent of partially-digested worms, though I've never seen anything like that. Have you checked your parameters lately?
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    Right now theyre in smaller tubs that i do daily water changes in
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    I'll admit Ive bought test strips but they havent come in yet
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    I use Prime to dechlorinate the water, which was recommend by the girl I got them from
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  • madcaplaughs:
    For now I'd tub the axolotl and do daily 100% water changes until you're able to test your parameters
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  • madcaplaughs:
    I'd also recommend ordering a liquid test kit such as the API Freshwater Master Test Kit since strips are generally unreliable and inaccurate.
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  • MadamePirateOwl:
    Okay, thank you for your help and advice :)
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    anybody growing tylototriton?
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    hi I’m looking for some insight, it would really help if you could check out what I have written^
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    Hey so does anyone ever update this site. I mean the photo contest from 2012..
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  • Chelsea smith:
    Hello! Anyone there right now by chance? I have a couple questions about plants in an axolotl tank.
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    Chelsea smith: Hello! Anyone there right now by chance? I have a couple questions about plants in an axolotl tank. +1
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