Axolotls are neotenic amphibians, meaning they retain their larval, or juvenile characteristics, even as adults. Most specimens never go through metamorphosis, yet are still able to reproduce from one year of age. Those larval characteristics include feathery external gills and finned tails. Adult axolotls are usually 7-11 inches long. They range in color from white (albino) to dark.
Axolotls in the Wild
Freshwater wetlands. They require deep water levels and plant growth so they can lay their eggs. Axolotls spend their entire lives underwater.
Only near Xochimilco, Mexico. They used to be found in Lake Chalco, which is now dried up and Lake Xochimilco has nearly vanished too.
Their diet consists of worms, insects, tadpoles and a few other invertebrates.
Listed as “critically endangered” because its area of occupancy is very small, its distribution is severely fragmented, and there is a continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat and in the number of mature individuals.
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