Last Updated on May 16, 2022 by Guillermina
Can an axolotl live out of water? Learn all about this amazing aquatic creature.
Forget anything you thought you knew about unusual water creatures because today you will meet the strangest among them – the axolotl. This unique member of the salamander family is often called ‘the walking fish’, and you will soon find out why.
In this article, you will find answers to many questions from its amazing genetics, appearance, and very significance to humanity. One of the biggest enigmas associated with this remarkable being is can an axolotl live out of water? Therefore, stay with us and find out.
What Is An Axolotl?
Axolotl, (Ambystoma mexicanum) is a salamander that comes from the family Ambystomatidae (order Caudata). It is characterized by its permanent retention of larval features, such as external gills. So, the axolotl has an extremely rare genetic makeup that due to a rare condition called ‘neoteny’ results in the retention of the vast majority of their larval features even in adulthood.
Furthermore, axolotls are carnivores which means they survive by feeding on worms, insects, crustaceans, mollusks as well as some small species of fish. Until recently, they were widespread because they were at the top of the food chain. Today, the situation is quite different due to various invasive species such as perch and tilapia, which have become their natural enemies and contributed to the reduction of their numbers. It is important to note that this species of salamander can only be found in Lake Xochimilco, within Mexico City, where it is listed as a critically endangered species.
They usually spend their whole lives below the surface of the water, so they are often mistaken for fish. Given that it belongs to the genus salamander, it is no wonder that many wonders can an axolotl live out of water?
Well, let’s find out the answer to the question.
Can An Axolotl Live Out Of Water?
Nope! That’s not true, axolotls definitely can’t live out of the water. They are amphibians and really have both lungs and gills for breathing, but being out of the water is simply not in their favor.
In addition, we must emphasize it is not possible for an axolotl to walk on land.
Can Axolotl Survive At All If Found Out Of The Water?
Now that you know the answer to the question can an axolotl live out of the water, it’s time to dig deeper into the topic. They can’t live, but they can survive for up to an hour outside of water. It all depends on the conditions of the air such as humidity and temperature.
Of course, it is not recommended to test this theory. You need to know this information because this unique aquatic creature can sometimes jump out of the water. If your axolotl jumps out of the water, and if the impact is not too strong, you don’t have to panic because it can survive being out of the water.
Can They Breathe Out Of The Water?
Yes, they have the ability to breathe out of water. Namely, their gills help them exchange the gases from their bodies and bring in healthy gases such as oxygen and this whole process usually takes place in water. Furthermore, gills will continue to work if they are on land, but not to the extent they would work in water.
Mother Nature is truly miraculous, so she took care of some means of respiration in these interesting creatures. Namely, they have the ability to breathe through the skin and lungs, and they also have buccal breathing, which means that they can breathe with their cheeks.
It is important to re-emphasize that secondary forms of breathing are not intended to be long-term, and will only last for a limited period of time.
Is It True That Axolotls Can Walk On Land?
Since Axolotls are aquatic animals, their bodies are adapted to swimming and moving around in the water. However, in case they find themselves out of the water, they will find themselves slightly unable to move around. Sure, they will move but not to the extent you would expect. The primary reason is that their limbs are not the best suited for moving around on the land.
Are You Allowed To Cuddle & Pet Them?
Who wouldn’t want to hold them in their hands? There is probably no person in the world who would not want that and especially small children who would gladly want them to inspect.
However, keeping out of the water for too long or too often is not recommended. By doing so you risk damaging their slime coat, and once damaged their body will be more exposed to various problems and diseases. In addition, holding in the hands gives great stress on the animal and in the worst case can result in death.
To Conclude – Can An Axolotl Live Out Of Water?
Axolotls are aquatic animals and accordingly will not survive outside of water for long. Remember this every time you, or someone close to you, feels the need to hold them in your hands.
We hope you found this article useful.
What are your experiences with these unique aquatic creatures? Let us know in the section below.
Also, take a look at this article as well.
How Long Can Axolotls Live On Land?
No, this species of salamander cannot live outside of water, however, it can survive for up to an hour outside of water, depending on the conditions of the air.
Can Axolotls Bite?
You may not believe it, but axolotls bite everything and anything that moves around in their vicinity. You don’t have to immediately create an aversion to these aquatic creatures because their teeth are too small to cause pain.
Can An Axolotl Regrow Its Head?
Unfortunately, the axolotl cannot regrow its own head. However, they can regenerate the front portion of their brain. Accordingly, you can crush their spinal cord and in 2-3 weeks their entire spinal cord machine will reconnect and the tail and legs will start working again.
Are Axolotls Poisonous?
Contrary to those species of salamanders that truly secrete venom, axolotls are not venomous. In addition, they are safe for human consumption and do not carry negative consequences. Some restaurants even serve axolotls.