Ana Claudia Talancón
Ana Claudia Talancón is an award winning Mexican actress, television host and philanthropist. On her awards shelf, Ana has been honored with the Silver Goddess by The Mexican Cinema Journalists, a Best Actress Latin ACE Award, an MTV Movie Award for her performance in Ladies Night and a Breakthrough of the year by Life magazine. Also the movie she stars in, The Crime of Father Amaro, was nominated for Best Foreign Film at the Golden Globes and Academy Awards. Ana also hosted the renamed Top Chef Mexico.
The Axolotl also known as the Mexican walking fish is actually not a fish at all but an amphibian — which means their body must remain wet in order to breathe. The name axolotl comes from the Aztec word meaning water monster and legend has it that a god disguised himself as a salamander to avoid sacrifice.*
Axolotls are carnivorous, mostly feeding on small prey such as worms, insects, tadpoles, crustaceans and wounded fish and locate their food by scent. When ready to feed, they will "snap" at their potential meal by sucking the food into their stomachs with vacuum force. Axolotls are also unique in that they have the ability to regrow limbs and reach adulthood without undergoing metamorphosis.**
Lake Xochimilco, in the Valley of Mexico, is the only known home of this extremely rare amphibian. Today, Lake Xochimilco exists more like a series of canals due to urbanization in Mexico City and consequently water pollution is the primary reason for their near extinction.***
*Mythic Salamander Faces Crucial Test: Survival in the Wild. Tickell. 2012
**Evolution of Motor Patterns: Aquatic Feeding in Salamanders and Ray-Finned Fishes. Sanford et al. 1989
how can we help?
The importance of being an advocate for endangered species in today's crowded world goes further than ever before. The more you learn and share with your friends and family about the axolotl and its habitat the better chance we have for its survival.
The Dallas World Aquarium is a leader in axolotl conservation. To learn more about axolotls and their habitat, visit dwazoo.com/animal/axolotl. We can all build awareness and take conservation action close to home and support endangered species conservation around our world.