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How To Keep Axolotl Tank Cool: 8 Safe & Effective Methods

Lindsey Stanton Profile Picture

By Lindsey Stanton


Axolotls are some incredible creatures as far as we are concerned. One of the first things to mention here is that axolotls are often confused for being fish, but they are not. Axolotls are amphibians, but are still often referred to as “Mexican Walking Fish”. Names, origins, and type of animal aside, the axolotl is an animal that likes things to be fairly cold.

They barely come out of the water, so a lot of this is keeping the water cool, but the air as well. Anyway, how to keep an axolotl tank cool is what we are here to talk about today.

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Ideal Temperature for Axolotls Tanks

axolotl in sand with plants
Image Credit: Tinwe, Pixabay

Before we talk about how to keep an axolotl tank cool, you probably need to know what the ideal temperature for them is. Both the water and the air in your axolotl tank should never exceed 18 degrees Celsius or about 64 degrees Fahrenheit. The minimum water and air temperature for an axolotl tank is 16 degrees Celsius or 60 degrees Fahrenheit. As you can see, these creatures like the cold, as opposed to the warmth which many other creatures like.

Keeping an axolotl tank cool is extremely important to its well-being. Sure, having the tank too cold can lead to behavioral changes, sluggishness, and a decreased metabolic rate. However, the tank being a little too cool is not nearly as bad as it is too hot.

Anything over the maximum of 18 degrees Celsius is very problematic for axolotls. Not only will they be very uncomfortable, but the health risks of being too hot are enormous for these creatures, and potentially fatal.

axolotl in tank
Image Credit: Jeffrey Lagmay, Shutterstock

How to Keep Your Axolotl Tank Cool

So, if you live in a warmer climate, or even in a place that has fairly warm autumns, springs, and summers, you are going to need to find a way to keep the tank cool or to cool it down. This is extremely important for the health of the axolotl, so you need to have an efficient and reliable way of doing so.

Here are some of the best tips we can give you in terms of how to keep an axolotl tank cool. On a side note, you should get an aquarium thermometer, preferably one that can read the air and water temperature simultaneously. Simply put, without a good thermometer, you won’t know the temperature the tank is at, which means that you won’t know what kind of adjustments need to be made.

Best Tips
  • The best thing you can do to make sure that your axolotl and the tank stay cool is to keep them in a cool place. While the basement of your home might not be visually appealing, it is most likely much cooler than floors higher up.
  • Try to keep the axolotl tank in a part of the home that does not receive much or any direct sunlight. Keep it in a room of your home that does not often get hit by the sun, while also keeping it away from windows.
  • The next thing you can do to ensure that your axolotl tank stays cool is to keep it away from electronics that create warmth. This might sound strange, but electronics like televisions and computers produce a lot of heat, so keep them away from your axolotl tank.
  • The next thing that you can do to keep your axolotl tank cool is to use a cooling fan. One that blows a decent amount of wind is a good idea, but not too much. Moreover, you want the fan to hit as much of the water’s surface as possible. This will help the heat dissipate from both the tank water and the air in the tank.
  • Any kind of air fan is a good idea. However, you might not necessarily want to use a fan with an actual cooling unit built-in, like a small air conditioning. Unless it has a good temperature adjustment feature that is very accurate, you could end up making the axolotl tank too cold.
  • Many people add ice cubes to the water in the tank or simply place a frozen water bottle in the tank itself. A couple of ice cubes in the water are fine but don’t put a whole frozen water bottle in the tank. If you are using the bottle method, keep the bottle mainly out of the water in a corner of the tank.
  • When doing the ice method, be sure to always have ice bottles or cubes ready. As soon as one is fully melted or thawed, you need to put the next one in. You don’t want the temperature to fluctuate too much because that is also not good.
  • Finally, you will want to get lights that don’t produce a lot of heat. Yes, you do want to meet the minimal lighting requirements of the axolotl, but that is it. The more lights you have and the stronger they are, the more heat they will produce. At the same time, for any in-tank electronics and moving parts, such as the filtration unit, make sure it does not create a lot of heat or consume a lot of power (which will create heat).

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Keeping an axolotl tank at the right temperature is honestly a little difficult, but with some good knowledge and practice, it is still doable. As long as you follow the tips we have outlined above, you should have no problems with keeping the axolotl tank at the ideal temperature.

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Feature Image Credit: Henner Damke, Shutterstock

Lindsey Stanton Profile Picture

Authored by

Lindsey discovered her passion for fish keeping after a junior high school field trip to the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. Prior to becoming Editor-in-Chief of It's a Fish Thing, Lindsey studied marine biology at the University of California-Santa Cruz. She loves goldfish, tetras, and mystery snails, and recently began experimenting with a saltwater aquarium.

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