The trials and tribulations, of my axolotls

Locke

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Hey everyone. I am starting this to both document what I am doing with their tank, diet, etc, as well as hoping that those who read it will have either constructive advice or ideas.

Currently the Axolotls are chillin in tubs. The tank is on day 8 of its cycle. Ammonia is at 3 ppm, nitrite at 8 ppm, nitrate at 12ish ppm. I would say that our bacteria cultures are starting to take effect. I have been adding the same amount of food pellets as the lottls eat per day to the tank to simulate a similar amount of nitrogen as will be expected. I am using seachem stability to speed the cycle along.

I am using a surface fan to keep the temp in the tank at 65 degrees. The tubs are staying at the same temp. They seem pretty content to just sit in the water and eat.

The tank is bare bottom for fear of them getting impacted or a ammonia bubble forming in the sand. I have added java ferns, java moss, marimo moss, and frogbit to the tank. The plants are doing great while the tank is cycling.

The axolotls are currently about 5-6 inchs long and are eating about 8 pellets each per day. I give them a day off feeding once a week.

What do you think of my current set up? Anything I am missing?
 

KumquatSquats

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make sure you have places to hide too, garden pots are a cute and cheap alternative to fish shop hides (which i often find are too small for an adult axolotl)
 

Locke

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make sure you have places to hide too, garden pots are a cute and cheap alternative to fish shop hides (which i often find are too small for an adult axolotl)
I cut up a piece of svd40 PVC and used silicon to make a hide structure out of it. I then boiled it to remove any chemicals that could leech into the water.
 

Locke

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Then i rooted the java moss too it. Perfect hide. And the frogbit on the top of the tank is doing a good job of breaking up the PAR.
 

Locke

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Tank is almost done cycling. Ammonia has hit 0 ppm. Nitrite is still high as Willie Nelson on tour. Nitrate is steady rising. I suspect I will be ready to put in the Axies by friday.
 

KumquatSquats

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Then i rooted the java moss too it. Perfect hide. And the frogbit on the top of the tank is doing a good job of breaking up the PAR.
sounds nice! i have a PVC pipe i want to use in my tank but i dont like the industrial look so ive been thinking of ways to rough it up and attach plants to it or dye it to look more like a tree branch (saw a tutorial on youtube i want to try)
 

Locke

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The cycle is going slow at this point, no detectable ammonia in the water but nitrite is still high. I believe it is because I do not have substrate that it is taking longer for the bacteria colonies to take root. Hopefully it will complete the cycle in a few days. The Axies are still eating plenty and keeping cool in their tubs but they are growing and will be too big for their tubs soon. I am surprised at how fast they grow in the right conditions.

On the subject of growth, the frogbit isn't propagating as quickly as I had hoped. From the research I have done the leaf tops should stay dry but they are consistently wet and it is causing the leaves to rot. The sponge filters that I am using are causing a good bit of surface turbulence as well as the cooling fan. It isn't dying off completly but seems to grow new leaves as fast as they die.

While I was feeding them tonight, I also noticed some white bumps on my wild type. The water is changed twice daily and temperature is perfect. I am not sure if it is the cramped quarters that is causing it or stress from all the water changes. He continues to eat though though and his gills look good. I will keep an eye on it and post updates as it progresses.

I am so ready for them to go into the tank. They need some room to grow. Wish my bacteria well everyone!!!
 

Hayleyy

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It sounds like you're on top of everything! Post some pics of the white bumps in case it's anything that needs to be treated. I haven't used frogbit so can't help there unfortunately.
 

Locke

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Nitrites are finally headed down. I upped the daily dose of stability by 20% and that seems to have pushed it over the edge. Ammonia still is not detectable, give it a couple days and the Axies will be in there new home.

Far as the white spots on him I think it was because I was lightly dosing their water with Stress coat in hopes it would make the small space a little more comfortable. Instead I learned that Aloe and Axolotls do not mix. After some new water and a night in the fridge his coat is already looking better. Still curious tho as to why he was the only one who showed negative effects from the solution.

So we have several snails that have spawned in the tank. I guess they came in on the Anubia that I got at petco. Only one has gained any substantial size. I will post pictures and hopefully someone can tell me what species they are. I just wanna make sure that their shells dont run any risk of impaction.

For now I am letting the snails do their thing. There is a lot of decaying matter at the bottom of the tank and they are doing a good job of breaking it down.

Till next time!!! Pray for our Bacteria!!! lol
 

Locke

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Tested the water tonight and the Nitrite levels are no longer detectable, sky blue baby. I put some more food in for good measure, I will be patient and watch the levels over the next few days to be sure it is stable. So close to putting the Axolotls in.

I plan to start changing out their water with some water from the tank. Little by little. Like a 25% solution of tank water on the first water change, just so the change is gradual for them.

I checked back with the breeder I got it from about the bumps. The guy told me I am over thinking it lol. He doesn't seem to really know much about water chemistry or cycles, but breeds and keep some Beautiful axies. I don't get it, I guess his tanks have just been cycling so long he doesn't have to care.

Anything I am overlooking? What do you guys and gals think?
 

KumquatSquats

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the snails should be ok until they get bigger, its just when the snail gets to be big enough to impact them that they are a worry.
as for the white spots thing, it was probably the slime coat peeling and that is harder to see on your light colored 'lotls. glad you figured it out!
 

Hayleyy

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Some individuals are more sensitive as well, so maybe one of yours is like that. If you can I would remove the snails. I've had it before in my betta tank and once they start breeding it's really hard to remove them all. You'll suddenly have hundreds haha. Your axolotls look young as well so the impaction may be more harmful if they do swallow one.
 

Locke

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Update. I took out the bigger snails and the little ones are disappearing. So the axies are definitely eating them and still pooping normal so I am not worried about the snails anymore.

Also we have officially named them. The wild type has been named Sir Reginald Chaunkers first of his name, herald of the tank. The leusistic has been named Madam Vouge Delphine. The albino goldie has been named Annatar Lord of gifts.
 

Hayleyy

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Love the names!
 

Locke

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Thanks! I didn't want to do the basic names lol toothless, calypso, goldie, etc
 
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