Black Axolotl

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    The axolotl is only native to Lake Xochimilco and Lake Chalco in central Mexico. Unfortunately for the axolotl, Lake Chalco no longer exists as it was drained by humans to avoid periodic flooding, and Lake Xochimilco remains a diminished glimpse of its former self, existing mainly as canals. The water temperature in Xochimilco rarely rises above 20 °C (68 °F), though it may fall to 6 or 7 °C (45 °F) in the winter, and perhaps lower. The wild population has been put under heavy pressure by the growth of Mexico City. Axolotls are also sold as food in Mexican markets and were a staple in the Aztec diet. They are currently listed by CITES as an endangered species and by IUCN as critically endangered in the wild, with a decreasing population.

    Axolotls are members of the Ambystoma tigrinum (Tiger salamander) complex, along with all other Mexican species of Ambystoma. Their habitat is like that of most neotenic species—a high altitude body of water surrounded by a risky terrestrial environment. These conditions are thought to favor neoteny. However, a terrestrial population of Mexican Tiger Salamanders occupies and breeds in the axolotl's habitat.

    The axolotl is carnivorous, consuming small prey such as worms, insects, and small fish in the wild. Axolotls locate food by smell, and will snap at any potential meal, sucking the food into their stomachs with vacuum force.

    Zeetz Jones, PicklesLabrador, FMaffei, and 7 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. Zeetz Jones 71 months ago | reply

      Interesting creature. I live close to Mexico and yet haven't heard of them before.

      --
      Seen on your photo stream. (?²ˣ)

    2. Filipe Ghirardello 71 months ago | reply

      Wow!! That´s so amazing.. to bad "we" exist... thank´s to us they are endangered... :(

    3. Giles Watson's poetry and prose 71 months ago | reply

      I love axolotls, and used to have them as pets when I was a kid. It's hard to find domestic ones anywhere now. I like this one particularly because it is such a natural colour. Lovely photo.

    4. Twitchietai 71 months ago | reply

      That's a stunning creature.
      It's such a shame about the number of amphibians that are now endangered or extinct because of destruction of their habitat.

    5. hiromi2007 71 months ago | reply

      great capture !!!
      In japan, we have "oo sansho- uo" (The Japanese giant salamander (Andrias japonicus) similar to axoloti . It is living in the river. It is specified as the natural treasure. But in my childhood, my father had it in our private pond.
      en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_giant_salamander

    6. sanlucarmanolo 71 months ago | reply

      Esta Fotografía es Excelente…!!!
      This Photography is Excellent…!!!
      Pinar de la Algaida
      Te invito a agregarla al grupo:
      Invited to Post Your Wonderful Photo to:

      NATURALEZA EN ESTADO PURO

    7. sanlucarmanolo 71 months ago | reply

      !!!BEAUTIFUL !!! : SEEN IN:
      !!!PRECIOSA!!! : Vista en:
      peludo
      NATURALEZA EN ESTADO PURO

    8. ☺ chetty 70 months ago | reply

      wooow,noch nie gesehen!!
      interresting creature+++

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