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Any of several salamanders of the genus Ambystoma of Mexico and the western United States that do not go through metamorphosis, becoming sexually mature while in an aquatic larval form with external gills.
[Nahuatl āxōlōtl, ātl, ā-, water (akin to Hopi paahu, paa-, water, from Proto-Uto-Aztecan pa') + xōlōtl, twin, the dog-headed god Xolotl (the twin of Quetzalcoatl), monstrous birth, monster, dwarf, servant (akin to Paiute sinawava, coyote, the Paiute coyote god, from Proto-Uto-Aztecan *sı̷ra'awı̷, one who is a double, from Proto-Uto-Aztecan *sı̷n-, to be double, look like).]
1. (Animals) any of several aquatic salamanders of the North American genus Ambystoma, esp A. mexicanum (Mexican axolotl), in which the larval form (including external gills) is retained throughout life under natural conditions (see neoteny): family Ambystomidae
2. (Animals) any of various other North American salamanders in which neoteny occurs or is induced
[C18: from Nahuatl, from atl water + xolotl servant, doll]
ax•o•lotl(ˈæk səˌlɒt l)
any of several salamanders of the genus Ambystoma, of Mexico and the western U.S., that remain in the larval stage as sexually mature adults.
[1780–90; < Nahuatl āxōlōtl]