Axolotl Morph : A Comprehensive Guide
The axolotl is a unique and fascinating creature. It is an amphibian that has been around for centuries and can be found in the lakes of Mexico City. Its striking appearance and its ability to regenerate lost body parts have made it popular among scientists, hobbyists, and aquarium enthusiasts alike.
In this article, we will explore the various axolotl morphs available on the market today and discuss their care requirements and interesting facts about them. We will also provide tips on how to identify an axolotl from other species of salamanders so you can choose the best one for your collection!
An axolotl’s morph is the physical appearance of an individual axolotl. Axolotls come in a variety of colors, patterns, and sizes. The most common axolotl morphs are wild type (black or gray with spots), golden albino (yellowish-gold color with black eyes), leucistic (white or pale pink with dark eyes), and melanoid (black or deep brown color without any other markings). Some rarer morphs like copper, pied, and piebald are also available.
Axolotls require clean living conditions to remain healthy and thrive. An aquarium tank should be at least 10 gallons for one adult axolotl, though larger tanks can house multiple individuals. The water should be filtered regularly and kept between 68–72 °F. A light source helps the axolotl find its food more easily but must not provide too much heat as this can lead to stress on the animal.
Interesting Facts About Axolotls
- Axolotls have lungs which allow them to breathe air from above water.
- They can regenerate lost body parts such as limbs, organs, tail fin, skin layers, jaws etc.
- The average lifespan of an Axolotl is around 15 years when given proper care.
Unveiling the Rarest Axolotl Morphs
Axolotls are small, aquatic salamanders native to Mexico and widely found in pet stores around the world. They come in various colors and patterns, each with its own unique characteristics. Here we will discuss some of the rarest morphs or color variations of axolotls.
The leucistic axolotl has a pale ivory skin tone, often with very faint brown spots or patches. The eyes may be gold or copper colored. These animals are sometimes referred to as “ghost” axolotls because they have an almost translucent appearance.
The melanoid axolotl is solid black from head to tail and has dark red eyes. This type of axolotl is believed to have been selectively bred for its dark coloration.
GFP (Green Fluorescent Protein) Axolotls
GFP (Green Fluorescent Protein) axolotls were created through genetic engineering techniques that inserted jellyfish genes into their DNA sequence. These axies glow green under UV light, making them one of the most exotic looking morphs available!
Albino axolotls are white with pinkish-orange eyes due to lack of pigmentation. Their skin is usually transparent enough to show off their internal organs!
Golden Albino/Golden Leucistic Axolotl
The golden albino/leucistic variety looks similar to normal albinos but with more yellow tones on their body and reddish-orange eyes. This is caused by a mutation in the tyrosinase gene which causes a decrease in melanin production.
The Transformation of Axolotls
Axolotls, also known as Mexican salamanders, are unique creatures that can transform from its larval form to an adult state in a process called neoteny. This means that the axolotl never fully matures and stays in its juvenile form throughout its life. This is especially unusual for amphibians since most amphibian species must undergo metamorphosis where they change from their juvenile stage into adults.
Neoteny is a very rare phenomenon in animals and it allows axolotls to develop specific traits such as larger size and greater fertility than other members of their species. In addition, they also have regenerative abilities which allow them to regenerate lost limbs or organs.
Stages of Transformation
The transformation of axolotls involves several stages:
- Metamorphic induction: This is the first stage where environmental cues such as temperature changes or light exposure trigger signals within the body to initiate transformation.
- Morphological changes: At this point, physical changes begin taking place as the body starts growing new external features such as fins and eyes.
- Physiological changes: In this stage, physiological changes start happening inside the organism’s body including alterations in hormone production and metabolism rate.
- Behavioral Changes: In this final step, behavioral changes take effect which includes increased activity levels and mating behaviors associated with adulthood.
What Causes Axolotls to Transform into Salamanders?
Axolotls are a species of amphibians that have the ability to transform, or metamorphose, from an aquatic larval stage known as an axolotl into an adult terrestrial form known as a salamander. This transformation is triggered by hormonal changes in response to environmental cues such as temperature and day length.
When exposed to certain environmental conditions such as increased temperatures and shorter days, axolotls experience a surge in hormones like thyroid hormone (T4) and prolactin which signal the body to begin transforming from its larval state into an adult form. Once this process is initiated, it cannot be reversed.
The hormonal changes also cause changes in gene expression which leads to physical changes such as growth of legs and fins, reduction of webbing between toes, increase in size, change in coloration and development of lungs. These physical changes enable the axolotl to live on land rather than just water.
- Temperature: Higher temperatures stimulate the release of hormones needed for metamorphosis.
- Day Length: Shorter days indicate winter time when food sources become scarce so metamorphosing allows them access new resources.
The axolotl morph is a unique and fascinating creature. With its ability to regenerate lost limbs and organs, it’s no wonder why this species has been studied extensively for potential medical applications. Its bright colors and friendly behavior make the axolotl morph an ideal pet for those looking for something special in their aquariums. Through proper care, aquarists can enjoy the joys of owning a rare and captivating species of amphibian. With its many impressive features, it’s clear why the axolotl is such an endearing animal to so many people around the world.
Alexander is the owner of AnimalQnA. He is a pet lover. He has created this blog to share some of his knowledge on different kinds of pets.