How Long Do Axolotl Live? Keys To A Long Life

axolotl in water

Cute axolotl salamanders are so distinctive from other salamanders in that they never undergo the process of metamorphosis, which explains why they can only live in water. Because of the favorable weather and climate, they are primarily found in Mexico, earning the nickname “Mexican walking fish” in the process.

These creatures are widely sought after because of their distinctive appearance, which includes a lovely head, a smiling face, and a range of colors from green to bright red gills to gray, brown, and pinkish-white skin. However, how long do these creatures live?

How Long Do Axolotl Live?

Axolotls have an average lifespan of 10 to 15 years but can live more than that if taken care of properly. However, they are short-lived when they are in the wild as they are not fully protected there.

How long Do Axolots Live in the Wild?

Axolotls have a lifespan of five to ten years, but they are always at risk from diseases, predators, and habitat destruction. Because they lack fangs and claws to defend themselves, as well as being slow swimmers, they are readily preyed upon.

Because hiding in places or avoiding other animals in the wild is their only means of defense, they have earned the moniker “Peaceful Creatures.”

How Long Do Axolots Live in Captivity?

Axolotls that are raised in captivity experience less stress and live longer than their wild counterparts. The keeper must be careful when handling this species because it is quite delicate and needs to live out its days.

If they have the correct nutrition, they can survive for up to 10 to 15 years or even 20 years. They consume larvae, blood worms, red wrigglers, Mysis shrimp, small fish, frozen brines, daphnia, and aquatic insects.

How Long Can Axolotls Survive Without Water?

Quite briefly. Axolotls can survive for a short while without water, but as soon as they start to dry out, things can get really bad.

Axolotls are shielded from danger and other bacterial and fungal infections by a slimy protective covering that covers their skin. Long-term dehydration as a result of being out of the water puts axolotls in peril because their protective coat vanishes.

Ways to Ensure Your Pet Axolotl Lives A Long Life?

Axolotls are so prone and fragile that they cannot be left alone to look after themselves, but there are things that can be done to ensure they live long life.

Method 1: A Clean Tank

No aquatic creature can endure residing in a filthy tank. Even the so-called tank cleaners, Amano shrimp, struggle to thrive in an unclean aquarium. The dirt is particularly irritating to axolotls. Additionally, because they are orderly organisms, they require an orderly tank with water that is free of nitrates and ammonia.

Axolotls are extremely sensitive to unclean water, to the point that it could make them anxious or cause their organs to start acting strangely. Use the drip acclimation method to change the water every week or two weeks to keep the water and tank clean. Wash the tank frequently as well. This will aid in cleaning the water tank of contaminants.

Additionally, a method for biological, chemical, and mechanical filtration is available.

Method 2: Right Water parameters

It has been said earlier that axolotls are sensitive to water. Therefore, the water parameters must be ideal for their development and survival. The general hardness of water for the tank should range from 7 to 14, while the pH level should also range from 6.5 to 8.0 and the temperature should be between 60 and 64 degrees Fahrenheit.

However, there is a need to get a piece of cooling equipment for your tank as the temperature of the water might increase or decrease depending on the weather conditions of the place the tank is being set up.

Method 3: Breeding Season

Axolotls should be watched over carefully during the breeding season as the temperature of the water is wild and warm at that point, and if care is not taken,t might claim their lives.

Breeding in the wild occurs just once and could be repeated twice in captive creatures as the breeding season begins in March and ends in June.

Method 4: Proper Nutrition

Animals do not die as a result of being given the right food, so it is for Axolotls. The right food in the right proportion at the right time increases the life span of this creature, as they are lovers of meat and need protein in high proportion.

Foods like earthworms, daphnia, cooked shrimp, or cooked beef can be fed to them to aid their development and maintain their health. It is very important that you do not feed them contaminated food, as it could lead to their death.

Method 5: Minimal Handling

Axolotls are fragile creatures that do not have to be touched every time, as excessive touch could bring about the loss of limbs that cannot be regenerated immediately.

Moreover, they are easily stressed, and when they are touched, the slimy coat that protects them will be removed and they will be exposed to danger as it keeps them humid and protects them from bacteria and parasites.

Method 6: Right Tank Mates

The small animals will be bullied by aggressive, quick-swimming tank mates like bettas, which may stress them out or perhaps kill them in the process. Other axolotls or other small, calm fish like shrimp, guppies, and snails make the greatest tank mates for them.

What Are The Common Causes of Axolotls’ Untimely Death?

Amidst other things that might result in the untimely death of axolotls, we will be discussing the most common ones.

Reason 1: Wrong Water Parameters

When the temperature, pH level, and general hardness level of water vary from the standard one for its habitat, the creature is likely to die if the parameters are not corrected.

Reason 2: Pollution

History has it that there are a limited number of axolotls, and that is because they almost went into extinction in 2010 because of pollution. Axolotls are sensitive to bacteria and can not survive when their water is polluted or contaminated.

Reason 3: Predators

Axolotls are vulnerable to prey such as tilapia as they do not have any defense mechanisms such as claws or teeth to defend themselves.

Reason 4: Overfishing

Axolotls became a prized delicacy in Mexico as a result of rising demand, which led to overfishing and the deaths of the captured animals. Axolotl populations in the wild continued to decline.

Reason 5: Health Issues

Interbreeding is to blame for a few of their health issues. Axolotls are prone to illnesses such as fluid accumulation, tumors, germs, fungi, and parasites.

The lack of filtration in the tank, filthy water, or injuries brought on by improper tank setup or handling are just a few of the conditions that can develop from poor care.


Axolotls can live up to 10-15 years, or even 20 years if given the right care. They are neither immortals nor short-lived creatures. They should receive a lot of attention because of their delicate and sensitive nature, especially while in captivity.

You shouldn’t neglect the source of your pets because pet stores can not be reliable because they also want to generate sales. Do your research before purchasing a pet from any store. A costly healthy axolotl is preferable to a cheap unhealthy one.

Written by Sarah Rivera

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