What Do Axolotl Eat? – The Perfect Axolotl Feeding Schedule [2022]

Axolotl Feeding Schedule

An important part of caring for an axolotl is feeding them the correct diet. The perfect axolotl feeding schedule depends on the axolotl’s age.

This article will help you tailor the perfect diet for your axolotl and ensure that you’re not over or underfeeding them. The perfect axolotl feeding schedule is made of knowing what to feed your axolotl, how often and how much.

What To Feed Axolotl?

In the wild, axolotl’s diet consists of insects, worms, fish, larvae, mollusks. However, when kept as pets, axolotls can be fed two types of foods: live and frozen. Live foods include nightcrawlers, daphnia, blackworms, brine shrimp. Whereas frozen foods include frozen brine shrimp, bloodworms, and pellets.

Best Axolotl Food

The best axolotl food options for young axolotls include bloodworms, live daphnia, ghost shrimp. Whereas the best axolotl food options for adult axolotls include nightcrawlers, blackworms.

Live Food: Nightcrawlers and Bloodworms

Nightcrawlers, also known as earthworms, are definitely the most nutritious and staple axolotl food option. Another positive is that they are easily sourced.

Type of nightcrawlers for axolotls include Canadian Nightcrawler, European nightcrawler, and red wigglers.

One important point to note is that red wigglers are not suitable for young axolotl. A good substitute is blackworm that is suitable for young axolotls.


Bloodworms are a good option for your young axolotls’ staple diet. Whereas bloodworms should only be offered as an occasional treat to adult and juvenile axolotls.

One negative of feeding bloodworms is that make a mess and can promote fungus growth if not cleaned up immediately.

Where Do I Get Live Worms From?

Getting the axolotl worms from the right place is important as the wrong worms can result in health problems. For example, garden worms can be very risky because of fertilizer pesticides.

The safest place to source your live axolotl worms is from a worm farm.

Frozen Food: Bloodworms, Brine Shrimp and Pellets

Frozen axolotl food can be bought from any local pet store.

Frozen Bloodworms

Frozen bloodworms come in mainly twodifferent forms: frozen sheets or frozen cubes. Whatever form you get them in, make sure to be very careful when feeding them to your axolotl as frozen worms can get stuck in the gills, causing breathing problems, and eventually drowning.

Frozen Brine Shrimp

Frozen brine shrimps are one of the most available foods for your axolotl.


Although, pellets are the easiest axolotl food choice, you should be wary as it’s not 100% natural food that might contain chemicals or fillers. Therefore, it’s important to always read the label.

There are two types of Pellet axolotl food – sinking pellets that are suitable for adult axolotls and smaller pellets that are suitable for young or juvenile axolotls.

Worst Axolotl Food

The worst axolotl food that should be completely avoided include hard prepared food such as aquarium fish pellets. As axolotls are not able to chew food, they just swallow everything whole, this can lead to the pellets causing digestive issues such as impaction.

How Often To Feed An Axolotl?

axolotl feeding

How often to feed an axolotl depends on the axolotl’s age. For reference, baby axolotl measures up to 2 inches the most; juvenile axolotl measures to 2-5 inches and weighs around 10 ounces (50 grams); adult axolotls can be anything from 5 to 12 inches and weigh 10.5 ounces (60 to 250 grams).

How Often To Feed An Axolotl – Baby and Juvenile

Baby and juvenile axolotls measure up to 5 inches in length and should be fed daily to promote growth and development.

A good example of a feeding schedule for a young axolotl is either one worm with a couple of small pellets or one frozen cube of bloodworm and half a medium sized worm.

You don’t have to feed it all at once. For example, if you go with the second option of one frozen cube of bloodworm and half a medium sized worm, you can split it in two feedings per day – morning and evening.

How Often To Feed An Axolotl – Adult

Adult axolotls measure at 5 to 9 inches and need to be fed less often – one or two servings every other day.

The feeding schedule for an adult axolotl is a worm or a frozen cube every other day. The frozen cube can be cut in two and fed in the morning and the evening in the same day. As the axolotl’s size increase, the feeding should decrease to once every 2-3 days or twice a week.

If you don’t want to cut the cubes up, you can dissolve the whole cube in dechlorinated water and feed what you want and then fridge the rest in a container. It will last around 3 days in the fridge but if the bloodworm color starts to dull down, you should discard it.

Can You Overfeed An Axolotl

Overweight Axolotl

Yes, you can overfeed an axolotl easily. Axolotls are small animals that don’t need a lot of food, especially after 6 months when they reach maturity. If you overfeed an axolotl, they can become constipated which can be detrimental to their health.

Read the full guide on axolotl constipation here Constipated Axolotl? What Causes It and How To Treat

It’s essential to stick to the rule of feeding young and juvenile axolotls daily and adult axolotls – 2-3 times a week.

If you fear that you might be overfeeding your axolotl, take a look down on their belly. The belly shouldn’t be wider than their head. On the other hand, if their bellies are very thin, then you need to increase the feeding.

Another important thing to remember is that males are usually slimmer than females.

How Do I Know If My Axolotl Is Underweight?

Underweight Axolotl
Underweight Axolotl

The same way as overfeeding, you can also end up with an underweight axolotl. The way to tell if your axolotl is underweight is to look at their body. If their torso is significantly slimmer than their head, it means your axolotl is underweight.

It’s important to note that your underweight axolotl can be the result of an underlying health problem rather than not feeding enough. It’s important to explore all options.

How Do I Fatten Up My Axolotl?

If you have an underweight axolotl that’s a result of not feeding enough and you want to fatten them up, good food options are earthworms aswell as the occasional strip of raw beef.

Waxworms and butter worms are high in fat and can help with gaining weight. However, you must be really careful and not feed these exclusively, especially once you get the weight problem under control.

How Long Can Axolotls Go Without Food?

An axolotl can live without food for up to week and a half without causing any harm. However, it’s not recommended to not feed your axolotl for such a long period of time.

What Do Axolotls Eat?

As already discussed, axolotls can eat live or frozen food when kept as pets. Live foods include nightcrawlers, daphnia, blackworms, brine shrimp. Whereas frozen foods include frozen brine shrimp, bloodworms, and pellets.

But what about other foods? Can axolotls eat fish food, crickets and mealworms? Let’s take a look.

Can Axolotls Eat Fish Food

Axolotls can eat meat-based fish food pellets as long as they are not hard pellets. Good option are Hikari sinking pellets or sinking salmon pellets. 

Can Axolotls Eat Crickets

Yes, you can feed your axolotl small crickets. However, it’s important to only feed crickets as an occasional treat and not a staple diet.

Can Axolotls Eat Mealworms

No, mealworms are not recommended for axolotls because they have hard exo-skeleton that axolotls struggle to digest. Furthermore, mealworms aren’t very nutritious.

Final Thoughts

axolotl feeding

Feeding your axolotl the correct diet is an essential part of their care. The wrong feeding schedule can result in many health problems such as constipation, overfeeding or underfeeding.

The best food for young axolotls is bloodworms, whereas for adults is nightcrawlers. How much to feed your axolotl depends on their age. Young and juvenile axolotls should be fed daily, whereas adults – every 2-3 days.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQ

Axolotl Not Pooping? What Does It Mean?

Normally, axolotl not pooping, means they are constipated. However, sometimes the poop might be hiding either inside their hide spot or dissolved into the substrate. Keep observing your axolotl behavior for any additional symptoms that can help you determine the problem.

To read the full guide on axolotl constipation, head over here Constipated Axolotl? What Causes It and How To Treat

White Axolotl Poop? What Does It Mean?

White axolotl poop is a sign of an internal protozoan infection. Other symptoms include weight loss and lack of appetite.

To read more about axolotl poop and what’s healthy vs unhealthy, head over to the full guide Guide On Axolotl Poop – Healthy vs Unhealthy




My name is Iliyana and I'm a passionate animal lover and pet owner. As there is significantly less information online about unusual and exotic pets, I decided to found this website and recruit expert writers to help pet owners.

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