Food pellets are available for purchase from AGSC staff. Click here to download a supply order form. The food pellets are extremely nutritional. In the years that the colony has used them (since 1988), average size of adults has increased, growth rate has increased, death rate has gone down, breeding success has gone up. The pellets are "soft-moist" pellets made by Rangen, Inc. for the salmon industry. They sink to the bottom but hang together in the water for 24+ hours. They are soft so axolotls accept them readily. They smell very strong, so if the axolotls don't catch them on the way down, they can find them easily on the tank floor. Pellets do not foul the water like liver and heart diets. If a primarily live diet is used, pellets are a good backup when live food isn't available.
They can be stored at room temperature for several months but must be in an airtight container to prevent them from drying out. They reduce the labor involved in housing animals in the lab by reducing necessary water changes and promoting good health and fast growth. They are available in 2 sizes: 3mm and 5mm. We start feeding the small pellets when the larvae are 4cm in length and move them to large pellets at 8cm.
*If small gravel is used as a substrate on tank floor, precautions should be taken to prevent axolotls from eating gravel as well as pellets.