Axolotls are unusual salamanders that stay young forever. They don’t really live forever, but they have the condition called “Neoteny,” meaning they keep their larval features such as tadpole-like fins and feathery gills throughout adulthood. Axolotls can also regenerate tissues when wounded and re-grow not only missing limbs but even organs like lungs or kidneys. There’s so much scientists still don’t know about them – in fact, the axolotl is one of the most studied amphibians out there.
Upfront Cost of Axolotls
The surprisingly low price of axolotls is what has made them so popular among pet owners! As the demand for these types of pets increases, prices have gone up. The average cost can range from $20 to as much as $70 depending on where you purchase and how old they are when they’re purchased. Babies and juveniles will run around $25 or less while adults might be expensive at an average cost between $65 to $75 apiece.
Remember that usually, expenses don’t stop at the pet. Other initial expenses might include the following:
Shipping fee: Shipping fees will vary depending on the shipping provider and how soon you need to receive your package. Two-day delivery is about $20-$30, but quicker deliveries can cost up to $50.
Its tank: A ten-gallon tank will be just enough for your axolotl. It costs anywhere from $15 to $170, depending on the material and size you choose.
The substrate: The substrate is the material that allows axolotls to grip and maneuver. While a bare substrate does have its upsides, it can also lead to stress for these amphibians as they cannot cling onto anything. A sand-based substrate is generally considered the best option because of how natural it feels – but remember: different types of setup are meant for specific situations.
Sand makes the perfect home for your new axolotl friend thanks to its lightweight and easy-to-dig surface that won’t make them sick if accidentally ingested. You can find different kinds of sand at pet stores with prices ranging from $5 for 10 lbs up to $20 per 20lbs bag.
The filter: You need to keep the water clean and maintain the right water level with a filter at all times. The most efficient filtration systems can cost as much as $165.
Decorations: Decorations are important for any tank, but they’re especially helpful in the Axolotl’s home. A variety of different decorations can be used to create a sense of security and comfort – from small hides and plastic plants to caves or even rocks. The cost varies based on what you want, usually between $1 and $30 per piece.
What should be included in the price?
A lot of online sellers offer live arrival guarantees for their animals. If your axolotl dies during transit, you’ll have two choices: to get a refund or receive another one for free. However, shipping fees are non-refundable and if you choose the latter option, it’s important that you pay additional fees associated with having another shipped out.
Recurring Costs of Owning an Axolotl
Feeding your axolotls every day is necessary until they reach maturity. Once mature, feeding can be reduced to twice a week. Axolotls are carnivores and will eat live or dead food – their diet should consist mostly of protein-rich foods.
For the best nutrition, worms are a tasty and healthy choice for axolotls. You can buy blackworms or earthworms at your local fish store. However red wrigglers need to be killed before feeding because they excrete an unpleasant substance in self-defense when in danger.
Bloodworms, a type of worm that is not actually related to worms at all and can be found in the larval stage as well. They are an excellent food for axolotls because they have everything they need–nutrition and balance. Aquatic Foods offers 1/4-lb bloodworms for $19 or 10 grams blackworm larvae for only $11.
Axolotls will eat pellets, but they can be expensive. 100 grams of them is $4 to $8 and you can buy those online or at a pet shop.
You can also feed them something different once every week to keep it interesting! PetSmart sells frozen brine shrimp cubes in packs of 4 oz for $8 that is less messy than live ones.
A trip to the vet can cost $40-$60 for a routine checkup, but it could be $100 or more in case of an emergency. Axolotls are prone to bloating caused by how they’re fed. They usually eat by sucking food like a vacuum cleaner. Bloating is often triggered by overfeeding your pet, leading to excess gas that will overstretch the stomach.
In the event that your Axolotl has a bloating problem, you need to make sure they are getting laxative medication and have access to clean cold water. You can use tap water but let it run so it gets as cold as possible. Laxatives that can be used for humans are OK for Axolotls too.
Factors that influence the Axlotls price
Axolotl eggs, babies, and juveniles are fragile creatures that require special care. The reason they can be sold for a lower price is that the responsibilities of caring for them fall on you as an owner – not their supplier.
In contrast to juveniles, adults are more expensive because they are “ready-made”. A juvenile GFP wild-type axolotl is offered for $25 at “A Lot’L Axolotls”. The same adult kind which has been cared for and fed until fully grown costs over double that price in retail stores like ReptilesNCritters.
Axolotl colors can be classified in three ways: basic, uncommon or special, and rare. In order to get a specific color of axolotls, you will have to wait for them to become available at your local pet store.
Important tips while shopping
Axolotls can be found at local pet stores or online sellers such as Backwater Reptiles, Axolotl Factory Underground Reptiles, and Western Ax. Prices vary depending on the color of ax that you want to purchase so we suggest looking around for a seller offering what you’re after at a reasonable price.
If you’re looking for a good place to find Axolotls, try Caudata.org. This website is an information portal about newts and salamanders in general, but it has specific forums dedicated to the care of axolotls with other enthusiasts or breeders that can provide valuable tips on how best to take care of these amphibians.
The prices for axolotls vary depending on the breeder and what their purpose is. For example, you may find a baby worth $2 or an adult Golden Albino that goes for as much as $45. Before buying any of these amphibians, make sure to check your state’s laws; they are legal all throughout America but there are exceptions in California, New Jersey, Maine, and Virginia.
It’s an amazing feeling to own a beautiful axolotl. Consider that they’re critically endangered, and the wild population is dwindling fast too. To make sure these sweet little creatures thrive for future generations buy captive-bred animals as opposed to collected from the wild ones.