The axolotl is a type of salamander native to the Mexican Central Valley. What makes the axolotl especially unique among amphibians is that it is neotenic. This means that, unlike other salamanders, the axolotl remains in a kind of larval stage for the duration of its life. Because it never undergoes metamorphosis, it keeps its frilly exterior gills and lives an aquatic lifestyle.
Axolotls have amazing regenerative abilities! Not only can they fully replace a lost tail or limb without leaving a scar, they can even replace parts of their brain!
Sadly, due to habitat loss and pollution, the numbers of axolotls in the wild are in serious decline. With less than 1000 left in the wild, they are considered a critically endangered species and will go extinct in the wild in our lifetime without intervention.