How Active Should an Axolotl be ?

How active should an axolotl be ?

how active should an axolotl be ?

Are you worried about your axolotl that seems too quiet or on the contrary, it suddenly becomes too agitated and you are probably wondering what would be the normal activity of an axolotl and why do they suddenly become more agitated or calmer?

You should know that axolotls are nocturnal animals and that a young axolotl is rather active at night and early in the morning, they spend most of the day hiding in their shelters and only show up to eat or change shelters. 

Older axolotls , more than 2 years , may be more active during the day but not too much , because in , an axolotl that is shaking in its tank when it is usually calm could be due to stress or other reasons and that’s what we will check in this blogpost. 

What level of activity should we expect with a normally acting axolotl?

You need to know the character of your axolotl to decide if there has been a change in its activity or not! 

There are axolotls that are a little more active than average, but what we will be talking about in this article is abrupt changes in the activity and behavior of an axolotl.

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The so-called Normal activity level of an axolotl is rather quiet and they rarely move during the day, but as soon as night falls, they become more active and you will hear them stirring the substrate and moving the rocks in the Tank; older axolotls, a bit old I mean, can be more active and curious even during the day and outside the feeding time.

So, if your axolotl behaves in this way, know that it is normal and there is nothing to worry about, if not I invite you to continue reading…

My axolotl suddenly becomes too quiet even during the night?

axolotl low activity

When an axolotl becomes calmer than usual and starts to hide for a longer period of time in its shelter and does not move as before even during the dark hours, i.e. at night and in twilight

It could generally only be a drop in the temperature of the water in the Tank because of the arrival of winter for example, or you have just installed a Chiller and you may have set it up wrong …!!!!!

There could be another reason why your axolotl is getting quieter, maybe it’s sick !!! 

You must try to find out if your Axie is not suffering from obstruction (intestinal occlusion), it makes them rather calm and even stop eating ! 

And finally, if you have just introduced another axolotl bigger than the  one you already have , it will surely intimidate him and push him to stay hidden in his Shelter or in a dark corner of the tank !!

My Axolotls have become more agitated !

First of all, you have to make the difference between an axolotl that goes back and forth in the Tank just because it’s his character and he likes to walk around and inspect the decorations …etc.

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Secondly, an axolotl that gets agitated at night, it’s a very normal situation, just wait until daybreak and only start to worry if your axie is still doing the hundred p)aces in the aquarium.

The most common cause for over-excitation of axolotls is the water that becomes dirty (toxic)

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The first reflex you should have when you notice that your axolotl suddenly becomes more agitated is to take the API Aquarium Test Kit and check the levels of Nitrates, Nitrites and Ammonia. 

Nitrites and Ammonia must be zero ( 00 ppm ) or around, while the level of Nitrates must in no case exceed 60 ppm.

If the levels of these elements is higher in the tank, you go:

  • Start by changing at least 20% to 30% of the water in the Tank and do it at least once a week.
  • Stop overfeeding your axolotls and pick up the rest of the food you give them if they don’t eat it after 20 minutes.
  • Install a filter, or a more powerful one, think about chemical filters as well.
  • If you have put substrate, remember to empty the aquarium and clean it ( the substrate ) at least once a month, no need to clean the decorations and stones, if not you will break the nitrogen cycle!
  • Install your axolotls in a larger tank that contains more water, 40 Gallons minimum for an axolotl or a couple.

The rise in temperature will make the axolotls more excited

Your axolotl is a little more agitated than usual because maybe the water in the aquarium has become warmer!

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When the water temperature rises, the Oxygen level in the tank will automatically drop and your axolotls will have to swim and move to bring their gills into contact with as much water as possible to collect the maximum amount of oxygen from the water.

You will also notice your axolotls rising to the surface to breathe before plunging back to the bottom.

Take your thermometer and measure the water temperature, do it also at the bottom of the tank, because that’s where your axolotls should normally be most often.

Here are the normal temperatures and those that can agitate your axolotl

  • The temperature limits not to be exceeded are 59° F to 73° F ( between 15 and 23 degrees Celsius).
  • The ideal temperatures to calm your axolotl are from 60° F to 64° F (Between 16 and 18 degrees Celsius).

Your axolotl is getting restless because the water is too acidic !

active axolotl

Make sure that the PH of the tank water is about 7.5 ,  because the Axies like and remain rather calm in water a little basic, whereas an acid water has tendency to burn their skin and to make them more agitated, you can even see them jump out of water when that happens to them, and especially you will notice that their gills become bright red.

You must quickly get your axolotls out of the tank, start by changing at least 30% of the water in the tank and redo the tests, then determine what increases the acidity of your aquarium.

Use API pH UP Freshwater Aquarium Water pH Raising Solution to increase the Ph of the water if the water has become too acidic, go gradually.

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If the water is too basic, the PH is too high, above 8 For example, this will not please your axolotl and you must gradually lower the PH by adding little by little drops of API Ph Down.

I advise you to have both bottles, so you will be able to adjust the PH level in your tank each time this happens.

Your axolotl is only active on the surface and does not sink to the bottom?

In this particular case, your axolotl is not panicking, but it probably has a belly full of gas because of stress or because it has badly digested its last meal (it happens to the youngest).

In fact in this case, your axolotl wants to go back to the bottom of the aquarium but can’t manage to dive.

Empty a little water so that the legs of your axolotls can touch one of the decorations so that it can land on it and calm down a little.

If not put some water in a tank and place your axolotl in it with its favorite shelter until it deflates a little and then put it back in its tank, you will see it will immediately reach the bottom and go to its shelter.

Is your axolotl suddenly agitated because of the female?

active female axolotl laying eggs

If you have a couple of axolotls or an ailment and several females, and your male axolotl gets agitated and goes from one female to the other, be aware that one of them has just released a smell in the water that invites the axolotl male to produce and release spermatophores so that it can split the eggs in its belly.

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Read this to know more about axolotls breeding .

Prepare yourself in this case to see this female lay her eggs in the next 3 days at the latest.

If it is the female who seems hyper active, look at what she is doing, she is probably laying eggs and hanging them on plants.


The axolotls can be very active during the day just because it is their character, but in the majority of the cases, there is surely a problem behind, always seek to know what makes your ” axie” nervous and solve this problem so that your animal can benefit fully from its tank, and life … 

M Samy pet blogger and author at famillypet

About Author

Hey! M. Samy here , Welcome to my Blog I'm an animal lover, especially pets and Really concerned about their well being ; I've been around and caring for all my life and Now ; a full-time Pet blogger at your service . My motto here at Famillypet is: "Pets First" ... Read More

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