Axolotls are a type of small salamander native to Mexico. Found in freshwater lakes near Mexico City, the axolotl has become a popular pet, thanks to its adorable appearance. Small and elegant, axolotl colors are varied, with all kinds of beautiful color combinations across the species.
Are Axolotls Good Pets?
Yes, axolotls are great pets due to their easy-going nature and how simple it is to care for them. Get yourself a nice aquarium with enough water and lighting and you’re good to go! Beyond an aquarium tank and pump, you don’t need anything else for a good home for an axolotl.
Furthermore, the axolotl has a straightforward diet of insects and bugs. They’re also happy to eat pellets and other aquatic food, all of which are easily found in pet shops.
Why are there so many Axolotl Colors?
There are many axolotl colors, so if you’re looking to buy one, you’ll have plenty of options available! Some axolotl colors are rarer than others, so the cost is higher depending on the rarity of the color you choose.
The reason there are so many axolotl colors is because of their chromatophores. These pigment-bearing cells are responsible for the animal’s color, with three types found in axolotls – Melanophores, xanthophores, and iridophores.
There are fourteen different chromosome pairs within each of these three chromatophores, meaning they’re a lot of potential color combinations! Because axolotls are popular pets, crossbreeding has allowed us to unlock so many more of these axolotl colors!
So, today there are dozens of different axolotl colors and potentially many more we’ve yet to discover!
13 Amazing Axolotl Colors
The wild axolotl is one of five basic axolotl colors, which are the most widespread.
This axolotl has a gray-green color in darker shades to help camouflage. It also has a blackish mottling across the body, often with small gold specks. Their bellies are a lighter green-gray color.
As the name suggests, this type of axolotl color is the same as a wild axolotl.
Also known as leucitic axolotls, this type of axolotl is one that most people are familiar with. The pink axolotl is another one of the five basic axolotl colors.
They have a translucent white body, punctuated with pinkish-red gills and black-gray eyes. Many people love this adorable white and pink color combo, while the darker eyes help give it an expressive face.
Unfortunately, these beautiful axolotl colors aren’t great in the wild. The brighter tones make them visible to predators, so they’re incredibly rare in the wild. They’re a popular color for pets though, with lots of pink axolotls bred in captivity.
White Albino Axolotl
While many mistakenly think of the pink axolotl as an albino, it’s the white albino variation that has this unique trait. In fact, the white albino axolotl closely resembles its pink cousin, with the main difference being the pigment-free eyes. It’s also one of the five standard axolotl colors.
Other than that, they share the same white body and pinkish-red gills, although it does sometimes have gold speckling too. Again, their bright color makes them easy to spot in the wild, while their poor vision doesn’t help either.
Golden Albino Axolotl
The Golden Albino Axolotl has a remarkable golden body that takes on softer orange and yellow tones as they age. Like the white albino, it has poor vision and pigment-free eyes, giving them a unique yellow, white, or pink color.
These interesting color combinations give the axolotl an incredible array of gold, orange, and yellow across the body. They also have reflective spots and speckles, adding to an already striking appearance.
Despite its rare appearance, this is a basic axolotl color, with specimens (albeit rarely) found in the wild.
It’s easy to mistake the melanoid axolotl with the wild axolotl, especially because of their similarly darker tones. However, melanoid axolotls have a higher pigment count in their skin, causing more browns and blacks to develop.
Their darker tones remain solid throughout the body, while their eyes and gills also remain a solid black color. The melanoid axolotl is also one of the basic axolotl colors, being common in the wild.
Axanthic Axolotl Morph
The axanthic axolotl is an axolotl created from crossbreeding, so isn’t found in the wild. It’s a popular choice for a pet, making it one of the more common axolotl colors bred in captivity.
There are several color variations of the axanthic axolotl, including melanoid and mosaic, each one coming in light and dark colors. Also, they have colorful spots across the body, except when melanoid, which gives them a solid color throughout the body.
Copper Axolotl Morph
The copper axolotl has a gray body with lots of copper speckles. Their gills are usually a gray-red tone, while their belly remains a lighter tone of gray. There are variations of these axolotl colors, some being more caramel while others are closer to a soft pink.
Furthermore, this type of axolotl is an example of much milder albinism. They are technically an albino axolotl, with weaker pigments that give them a softer coppery hue. It’s not obvious that this type of axolotl is an albino – try shining a light in their eye to see a red reflection!
Green Fluorescent Protein Axolotl Morph
At first sight, this axolotl looks like any other basic axolotl color. However, shine a UV or blacklight on this axolotl and its appearance changes drastically!
This axolotl is known as a green fluorescent protein (GFP) axolotl, giving it an incredible green color that glows in the dark. As you can imagine, this genetic trait is exceptionally rare, with the green axolotl morph bred exclusively in laboratories.
Under a blacklight, the axolotl’s fluorescent green body begins to brightly glow, giving it a truly unique appearance. It’s not every day you see a glow-in-the-dark pet!
Chimera Axolotl Morph
The chimera axolotl is an incredibly rare color that occurs when axolotl two eggs combine prior to birth. Because of this, traits from both eggs remain in the hatched axolotl, giving it a striking split color appearance.
This split color comes from two basic axolotl types – the wild and pink axolotl. As a result, the axolotl takes on half the color of each type, including a white-pink half and a gray-green half.
If you can’t decide between a wild or pink axolotl, why not get a chimera? It gives you the best of both axolotl colors and a truly remarkable appearance for your aquatic pet. This one is guaranteed to catch the eye!
Mosaic Axolotl Morphs
The mosaic axolotl is another unique color combination of wild and pink axolotls. Unlike the chimera axolotl, which splits the color down the middle, mosaic axolotl colors are combined randomly throughout the body. As a result, they have a stunning mosaic of pinks, whites, grays, and greens.
A mosaic morph happens when two separate chromatophores cells combine into a single cell, producing a unique mosaic of colors.
Silver Dalmatian Axolotls
As the name suggests, silver dalmatian axolotls have various dark specks across their lighter-toned body, making them resemble dalmatians.
However, their bodies aren’t white like a dalmatian dog, instead of taking on a softer sliver-purple tone. As a result of their purplish appearance, they’re often called lavender axolotls.
Because their polka-dot appearance is incredibly rare, these axolotl colors are highly desired for pets.
This type of axolotl comes from crossbreeding two genetic types through embryonic graphing. As a result, the axolotl takes on two distinct colors on the upper body and tail. The colors typically include a dark body of a wild axolotl and a light tail.
Also, sometimes the tail takes on the trait of a GFP axolotl that causes it to glow in the dark. This amazing appearance makes the axolotl resemble a firefly!
Again, this is a rare axolotl variation made in laboratories, so you won’t find one available for a pet.
The enigma axolotl has a dark gray-colored body with a soft white belly, striking red gills, and yellowish eyes. Also, its body is marked with various gold speckles, often appearing green depending on the lighting and angle.
This type of axolotl color is one of a kind – there’s still only been one ever discovered. There’s little known about its genetic makeup and how it obtained its unusual colors and patterns – a true enigma!
Unfortunately, this means you can’t buy this type of axolotl as a pet!
As the list above shows, there is an incredible range of axolotl colors – many of which are quite rare! Thankfully, there are many magnificent axolotl colors available in pet stores, allowing you to find the perfect one for your tastes.
Remember, axolotls are great pets, being easy to care for and showing plenty of character. With their vibrant colors and expressive faces, it’s easy to see why axolotls are such popular aquatic pets.
With so many amazing colors to choose from, you may find yourself with more than one pet axolotl!