Mexican Axolotl - Ambystoma mexicanum
The axolotl is only native to Lake Xochimilco and Lake Chalco in central Mexico. Unfortunately for the axolotl, Lake Chalco no longer exists as it was drained by humans to avoid periodic flooding, and Lake Xochimilco remains a diminished glimpse of its former self, existing mainly as canals.
Lake Xochimilco and Lake Chalco in central Mexico.
Can be active at any time of day
Axolotls are neotenic aquatic salamanders, meaning they retain certain larval characteristics in the adult, reproductive state. They possess feathery external gills and finned tails for swimming. Animals in captivity exist in several color morphs, ranging from wild type (dark, mottled brownish-green) to albino. In the wild their color is mottled. The sexes can be easily distinguished in adult axolotls. Males can be identified by their enlarged cloaca, while females have a smaller cloaca and round, plump bodies.
Up to around a foot in length
Generally the top predator in their natural environment, axolotls will eat anything that they can catch, including molluscs, fishes, and arthropods. Their teeth are made for grabbing. They generally do not chew their food, but swallow it whole. They eat live or dead food.
The courtship behavior of A. mexicanum follows the general first involves each animal nudging the other's cloacal region, eventually leading to a
The Mexican Axolotls are listed with the World Conservation Union as "critically endangered". The conservation of International Trade lists this species as "Appendix II".
- Most remain in the larval stage throughout adulthood, maintaining their gills.
- Axolotls are being studied heavily by scientists because they have the ability to regenerate missing limbs, as well as have a very quick healing time
- The word “axolotl” comes from the native Aztec language. It roughly translates to: water sprite.
- Closest relative is the Eastern Tiger Salamander
- Adult (13 and over)$9.00
- Child (3 - 12)$5.25
- Child (2 and under)Free
- Senior (65+)$8.00
We begin transferring animals to evening (off exhibit) holding at 4:30 each night.
Open Daily 10:00-5:00
Last admission at 4:30