Question: New Axolotl Owner! (Just a few questions)

TmanTheFirst

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Hi ladies and gents!

My name's Tristan, I'm from the US, and I recently bought my first Axolotl! Its name is Kip (I'm not entirely sure yet if its a male or female, but I know how to tell. It's a very young axolotl, so it's hard to tell.) I just had few questions regarding my new little buddy! I know axolotls are still fairly new on the pets scene, and I'm just terribly worried about something bad happening to him/her!

So, my first big question was whether or not it is normal for a juvenile axolotl to pace alot in its tank? My axolotl SEEMS to enjoy swimmming back and forth at the top of his tank. Again, I only have one, and its housed in an optimal tank. So far, everything has been A-OK, filtration, water temp, little to no current, etc. I was just curious as to whether or not it was my little guy just being silly? or if it was something else? It DOES take breaks and doesn't seem to be constipated. Better safe than sorry though!

My second question is if any of you know good methods for testing the pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels in the tank? I've heard basic pH strips work well for pH testing, but I was curious about the others! Again, my axolotls' activity has been very normal from what I've read, I just want to be sure I'm on a good path for raising this little guy for a long time and keeping it happy!

Apologies for such a ong winded message. Any and all help is totally appreciated! If any repliers need photos/videos please ask! I'm more than happy to send!
 

TmanTheFirst

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Minor update: heres some photos. Apparently I cant upload videos right now? Apologies for the grainy quality as these are from my phone.37346235_2083509005305303_4439673153748205568_n.jpg

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37378046_2083505018639035_6343957199189966848_n.jpg
 

Tye

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First, younger axolotls tend to move more than adults. My two juveniles are more active at night and in the evening than they are in the afternoon. My younger melanoid moves far more than the slightly older wild type who just sits typically in one spot and waits for food. But movement is normal. I would be worried if it doesn't stop moving all day and takes no breaks.


Second, I use an API master aquarium test kit. It has liquid tests for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate, as well as a high and low scale pH test. You say your tank is optimal, however you then ask how to test water, so I'm wondering how you know it's optimal, did you get the water tested at a store? Is your tank cycled? If it's not cycled you have a bit of an adventure a head of you. There are many threads here with information on aquarium tank cycling.


Third, are those lights on the tank on a lot? Axolotls are sensitive to light so if you do have an aquarium light on over your little buddy make sure to provide it with lots of places to hide away from the light, they don't have eyelids so they can't just close their eyes.


Just monitor your tank water, keep the temperature within the safe range (younger axolotls seem to be less forgiving of sudden temp spikes), and feed frequently and Kip should live a long and happy life.
 
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