Out of pure boredom, and because I know I want to keep axolotls in the future when I get older, I signed up on the axolotl forum and the care page said that 1 adult needs a minimum of 10 gallons or a 2 foot tank.
I just can't believe this and have a feeling its a bit like people say that goldfish need 30 ltrs per fish but really they need 30 gallons.
Surely with the axolotl possibly growing to 14 inches, and being highly mobile and more sensetive to water quality, they would need a larger minimum space than this.
I was thinking they would need MORE than goldfish. I want LHG to say what he thinks cause he scientifically explained why goldfish need so much space etc. What do you lot think? One day I would like to keep 3 or 4 axolotls in the same tank.
Space requirements for axolotls are about the same as goldfish TBH. A nice long 40-50 gallon would be about right for a full size adult or two, and at adult size you'd be thinking about external filtration. They might not be quite as active as goldies, but your right, you do need the water quality, and they do eat and crap quite a bit. Lets be honest here, most of the people on these forums have never even seen a full size adult, theiy are ramifying their tanksize quotes against youngsters of 6 inches or so. Never measured my old pair, but they were over a foot and more than 3 inches thick and had good solid gill development, which is half the battle in keeping them healthy.
Axos with damaged gills will dwarf and die much as fish do, amd much as people dont realise they are dwarfing goldies , they wont realise they are dwarfing their axos either, and making fungal infections many times more likely, axos get fungal infections easy enough without damaging their gills and making it worse.
Youre right to be suspicious of the small tanksize recommendations. An adult in a 10 gallon would be considered emergency care, and an axo could not be expected to mature to size and age in a 10 gal, it would barely be able to turn around and would almost certainly die before reaching any great age! Minimums for adults must certainly be around the 40 gal, and you could have two in an aquarium of that size. Friend of mine used to have a great breeder tank with 6 in, it was around 100 gals. 10 gal minimums are for youngsters, and mostly its stupid newbie culture.
In a way I suspect that there is only not as much pressure on the axolotl forums to increase tank size because (wrongly I know) people seem to respect axolotls more. More often than not, I read of people increasing their tank size from 20 to 40 gallon simply because they "feel sorry" for the axolotl and "love it very much" rather than because they actually know this is what size it needs
But anyway it's gonna be a long time till I get some. I too wanted to breed them, it's like my dream. Didn't know you owned a pair! Someone's has metamorphed and I just learned about all that neoto whatever stuff. I feel better knowing this, cause I was initially under the impression that it was only in captivity that they didn't morph and that it was mean. Quite the opposite!
The metamorphosis in the adult form is not normal for most axos, but a retained ability in a few bloodlines. People have been messing about with them for years, forcing them to metamorphose into adults with hormone injections, and year long patterns of cycles imitating dry seasons, but adult axos dont live long, so its basically pointless. Its perfectly normal for them to stay as sexually mature neonates (technically a contradiction in terms lol) and they live 20 times longer that way.
In my book if you want something the size and look of an axo that will metamorphose normally, get a tiger salamander.