Axolotls are just plain cool, something the snarky anti-hero of Mr Blank believes wholeheartedly. Salamanders that live their entire lives in larval form and with a name that’s Nahuatl for “water monster,” they look like something prehistoric. Mostly because they basically are. Unfortunately, they showed stunningly poor judgment in habitats, existing entirely in Lake Xochimilco, or as it’s more colloquially known, That Lake in the Middle of Mexico City. Turns out that tons and tons of pollution are no good, even for an animal with the regenerative powers of Wolverine: in the most recent attempt to net wild axolotls for study, none were found, leading researchers to fear that the little beast might be extinct in the wild.
The good news is that axolotls are incredibly valuable due to that aforementioned regenerative ability and the fact that some odd people (ahem, Our Protagonist, ahem) like keeping them as pets. There are tons around the world living in aquariums and longing for the day when they’ll finally get the hang of this whole “breathing air” thing, waddle onto land, and messily devour all of us.
While it’s not certain the creature is gone in the wild, the best-case scenario is that its numbers have declined to the point that researchers who presumably do this kind of thing all the time spent three months trying to catch one and failed. The saddest part is, if they are gone, it’s a species we managed to wipe out, not because they’re tasty or have pretty fur to wear, but because we’re so goddamn filthy we kill stuff just by living next door.