Other names: Mexican salamander
Latin name: Ambystoma mexicanum
Older: 5 - 20 years
Appearance: different color variations possible (including black, pink or white)
Sexual dimorphism: Yes
Nutrition type: Carnivore
food: Insects, fish, fish spawn, crustaceans
distributionImage: Xochimilco Lake at Mexico City
original origin: Mexico
Sleep-wake rhythm: nocturnal
habitat: oxygen-rich waters
natural enemies: Predatory fish
sexual maturity: about 12 months
mating season: January February
oviposition: 100 - 800 eggs
social behavior: Loners
Threatened with extinction: Yes
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting facts about Axolotl
- The Axolotl belongs to the family of the Schwanzlurche and is known above all for its characteristic appearance and its occurring only with a few amphibians development.
- It occurs only in standing and cool waters with oxygen-rich water quality near Mexico City.
- At the bottom of the waters Axolotl lurk their prey, which consists of small fish, crabs and amphibious eggs and young newts. The brood and juveniles of their own kind serve Axolotl as an important food source.
- Axolotl are on average between 25 and 30 centimeters long and have short limbs, a strong rowing tail and eye-catching Kiemenäste on both sides of the head, giving them a striking appearance.
- Your body can appear in both a milky white, as well as in olive green or a deep black.
- The branched gilled branches, the animals also owe their name Axolotl, which comes from the language of the Aztecs and translated means "water monster" means. The Aztecs saw in this animal the reincarnation of their fire god Xolotl.
- Like some other amphibians such as the Grottenolm, Axolotl spend their entire life in the larval stage, breathing with gills and never reach the stage of development of metamorphosis. This is due to the lack of a hormone, which is caused by a thyroid defect.
- Despite this lifestyle, Axolotl become sexually mature and mate after pronounced courtship rituals up to four times a year. The female takes the male's sperm from the floor via her septic tank and lays up to 500 eggs only hours later. The young hatch after about twenty days and go from the beginning independently foraging.
- Axolotl have the ability to replicate body parts that have been damaged by attacks by predators such as birds or fish. Lost body parts such as eyes or limbs, but also damage to vital organs such as the heart or brain are regenerated after a few days.
- These fascinating amphibians are often considered pets because of their appearance. They must be fed with live food and can only be kept with other animals of their own kind.
- Their ability to fully regenerate body tissue has been the subject of intense research efforts in the fight against cancer and other diseases.
- Due to the increasing pollution of their habitats by tourism and the wastewater from Mexico City, the Axolotl is now considered an endangered species. The naturalization of carp and tilapas, which eat the eggs of this amphibious, cause a constant decimation of the stock.
- In the wild the perennial larvae reach an age of up to twenty years.