Axolotls are generally referred to as aquatic salamanders or “walking fishes”. Naturally, these amphibians are native to Mexico. Legend has it that a native Aztec deity had disguised itself like a salamander to hide away, hence the name Axolotl. Axolotls are tagged walking fishes because upon maturing, the adult Axolotl retains a large chunk of its larvae characteristics.
The Axolotl has five colors. These are the White Albino, Wild, Melanoid, Leucistic, and the Golden Axolotl. Interestingly, the blue Axolotl is actually the Melanoid. While it readily appears blue, upon closer inspection, you will find out that the Melanoid is dark gray. Compared to other axolotls, the Melanoid has higher pigmentation. For this Axolotl, its skin isn’t adorned with many shiny specs. This is one of the most conspicuous distinguishing factors between the Melanoid and the Wild Axolotl.
The Melanoid Axolotl (commonly seen as the blue Axolotl) is fascinating and worth your attention. Eager to learn some interesting facts about the blue Axolotl? Stay with us as we examine some thrilling facts you don’t want to miss about this beautiful Axolotl.
Cool Blue Axolotl Facts
It is incredible how the Melanoid is readily taken for blue. Their bodies are not adorned with the typical colorful flecks of the other Axolotl types. For this blue Axolotl (so to say), it has homogenous coloring, with one solid color covering it almost entirely. When viewed in dark lighting, this Axolotl appears black.
The blue Axolotl has a spectacular capacity for blending itself smoothly into its surroundings. A lot of this depends on the tank of your Axolotl. Consequently, you may intermittently notice the color of this Axolotl darkening into a thorough black or, at other times, lightening up into dark blue.
The color of the Melanoid consolidates into a full black when it matures. As the Melanoid gets older, it loses its differing color flecks, turning into a uniform black. There are cases where a Melanoid with two Melanoid parent axolotls that are thoroughly black grows golden specks sporadically distributed across its skin.
In this situation, the melanoid appears bluer, hence Melanoid axolotls are generally referred to as blue axolotls. Other than this, Melanoid axolotls have more pigmentation than the other types of axolotls.
Compared to the Wild Axolotl, the Melanoid Axolotl lacks the iridescent specs that adorn the Wild Axolotl.
How Big is A Blue Axolotl?
The blue Axolotl can measure anywhere from 6-15 inches in length. Averagely, you will see blue axolotls of 10 inches length. Very rarely, you will see blue Axolotls growing longer than 12 inches.
Commonly, due to more optimal living conditions (particularly as to diet, exercise, and rest), you would notice that blue axolotls raised in captivity are bigger than their counterparts in the wild.
As to weight, blue axolotls weigh an average of 10 ounces. As you would expect, longer blue axolotls will weigh higher than the shorter ones.
Do Blue Axolotls Bite?
Blue axolotls are carnivorous, and yes, they bite! However, if a blue axolotl bites you, it is only because it is mistaking you to be part of its food. This is why your blue Axolotl may appear to nip your finger when you feed it.
Such bites are wholly accidental and innocent and shouldn’t be interpreted as a sign of aggression. Nonetheless, the bites of axolotls are incredibly soft as these amphibians lack the dental force to cause reasonable damage. Therefore, it is highly unlikely that the bites of your blue Axolotl will ever break through your skin.
Other than this, it is not uncommon to see a blue axolotl biting another axolotl that tries to “invade” its territory, or if the other Axolotl irritates them. When they are less active, a blue axolotl can also mistake a neighboring axolotl for part of its food, and bite at it consequently.
Are Blue Axolotls Dangerous?
Well, to a human, a blue axolotl poses zero threat to you. There is practically no way a blue axolotl can harm you. As we said, their teeth are too feeble in the first place for them to hurt you if they bite you – wherein most of such bites are non-aggressive.
However, to other fishes and even to other axolotls, the blue Axolotl can be dangerous, being a carnivorous predator in its own capacity. The blue Axolotl would prey on its food by applying suction pressure to the incapacitated smaller animal, sucking it up into its mouth.
Indeed, the blue Axolotl is a very territorial animal. Hence, it is quick to attack and bite off the body part of smaller animals or its equivalent (in size) that trespasses into its territory.
This territorial instinct in the blue axolotls explains why it most times ends up a bad idea raising more than one blue Axolotl in one tank. There is a propensity for one of the blue axolotls to keenly watch its territory, violently biting the toes, tails, or gills of other axolotls or fishes it interprets as adversaries.
Can You Transform a Blue Axolotl into a Regular Salamander?
Indeed, it is possible to transform a blue axolotl into a typical salamander. Scientists have been to trigger the controlled metamorphosis of a typical blue axolotl into a salamander by injecting special hormones into them. Also, there have been isolated reports of environmental mutations and stress transmuting pet axolotls into salamanders.
Nonetheless, we don’t encourage that you independently seek to manipulate the genetic makeup of your blue Axolotl, especially when you are not an expert. If you get a blue axolotl, it is preferable to let it exhaust its lifespan as a blue axolotl instead of attempting to transform it into salamanders.
Can Blue Axolotls Smell?
Yes, the blue Axolotl is an avid smeller. This amphibian has a vibrant sensory capacity. When hunting prey, the blue Axolotl majorly deploys this sense of smell in picking out its prey even underwater or inspecting its edibility.
There are also cases where the blue Axolotl uses this sensory capacity in communicating with neighboring axolotls. Interestingly, the blue Axolotl can also use its smell to identify its potential mates.
What Predators Can Feed on Your Blue Axolotl?
Typical of the natural order of things, your blue Axolotl – that other preys find intimidating – is a juicy meal to other animals. If a blue axolotl is in the wild, birds will majorly prey on the blue Axolotl. The likes of storks and herons find the Axolotl a special delicacy.
They regularly skim the water, masterfully picking animals from underwater. Therefore, in circumstances where the blue Axolotl gets close to the glittering sunlight, the higher the chances of these birds picking them up and feeding on them.
Aside from birds, bigger fishes like tilapia and carps also prey on the blue Axolotl. However, this is rare, given that these types of fishes don’t naturally occur in the ecosystem of the Axolotl. If ever they are there, it is likely farmers introduced these bigger fishes.
How Do Blue Axolotls Communicate?
It is interesting to note that the blue Axolotl also communicates with its buddies just as we do like we humans do. How do they transmit these discrete packets of information? No, they don’t howl like the generality of animals.
When a blue axolotl wants to communicate with a neighbor, it will secrete distinct chemical trails that the axolotls in the vicinity can interpret and follow.
Communication is amplified between opposite sexes of the blue Axolotl during the mating season. Other than this mating season, it is scarce for an animal as individualistic and territorial as the Axolotl to communicate with each other.
How Do Blue Axolotl Breed?
There isn’t much definitive scientifically proven information on blue axolotls mating forever. From what we see in blue axolotls in captivity, they don’t show a particular preference for one mate. This mirrors what we see from salamanders too. Sure, this is in sharp contrast to humans that develop strong emotional bonds to one partner for life.
Typically, blue axolotl breeds with the partner that is available at the moment. For blue axolotls in captivity, you can spur them on to breed by significantly lowering the water temperature in their aquarium.
It is different for blue axolotls in the wild. For the latter, the breeding season comes in the winter. This can extend into early spring. Blue axolotls have a unique mating process between the male and female blue axolotl.
The male blue Axolotl basically generates “packets” of sperm and drops them on the ground, which the female would gather. So, this is what essentially happens. When a male blue axolotl picks interest in a female, he drops his sperm packets, leading the female to these packets. This means that as opposed to mating rituals we have seen from the generality of animals, there is almost no physical contact between the pair.
Should the female blue Axolotl be interested in these packets, she takes them up by positioning her body. In the case where it is not interested in the male, it would swim away from the sperm packets every time the male cajoles it to come to them. Eventually, the male catches the message of her disinterest and gives up.
This mating ritual between the female and male is commonly referred to as the mating dance. This process can go on for hours where the male is regularly coaxing her to come and check out the sperm. In the course of this, the male blue Axolotl could have to produce several sperm packets for the female’s inspection to make her pick.