Posted October 05, 2018 11:25:03Axolotls have been known to wander the woods, or even be spotted in their natural habitat in the wild, but until now, they’ve mostly been found in captivity, but that all changes on the west coast of North America.
A team of researchers has captured and bred a new species of axolott that is a member of the family Bactrianidae, which includes other small mammals, such as the red fox.
The new species, which is named Axolotla, is part of the group known as bactrianoid, meaning that it has the most primitive features of other mammals, according to the University of Texas at Austin.
In order to capture and breed this species, the team had to build a habitat for the animal, and they needed to know exactly where the animal lives.
That meant taking a photo of the animal to find the spot it needed to be in, and then following it around to capture images of the area to document its life cycle.
The team first collected the animals from a remote location in the state of Washington, but then they decided to move into a larger, more populated area in Oregon.
To do that, the researchers were able to capture the animal’s food source in a single trip.
“This is the first time that we have been able to actually capture the entire diet of an axoloid,” lead researcher Dr. Christopher Hays, an assistant professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine at UT-Austin, told ABC News.
It’s a very efficient method of capture and it’s very efficient because we can actually follow the animal around the area that we are capturing it in and capture all of its prey,” he said.
To get the axoloti’s food supply, the research team was able to harvest it from a large amount of ground squirrels, but even then, they needed a big bag to transport it.”
The squirrels are the largest animals that we’ve ever captured, and there was only one bag that we could manage to carry that much, and that’s just for the axiolotls, because they have a very low metabolism,” Hays said.
But even with a huge amount of food, the axiomat is still very agile and doesn’t like to stay in a specific area for long periods of time.”
When it gets fed, it will move around the tree or it will try to find a spot that is the most suitable for feeding, and we can do that,” Hay said.
Once the food source is collected, it’s transported back to the lab for genetic analysis.
Once this is complete, the scientists will begin to create new species from the axoids genetic material.
This research is one of many efforts being undertaken to bring back the axilotos, Hays explained.
The research was funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.