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May 14, 2005

Substrate - actual use

On an earlier entry, I showed what substrate I use and how to prepare it. In this entry, I'll show how I use it:

Chameleon cage

To the right is my entire chameleon "cage", which is more of a mesh enclosure called a "reptarium" by its manufacturer, Apogee. The reptarium is ready to be cleaned (you may notice some flecks of debris on the floor of the reptarium). Notice that you do not see the Eco Earth substrate mentioned above.

(Just as a side note, notice also that the three hanging plants are not hanging from the mesh enclosure, but instead are hanging from strings which are attached to the ceiling. This seems to me to be a very useful, yet under-used technique for decorating chameleon cages.)

Cleaning the chameleon's cage

So, to start out, what I do is remove everything that's on the bottom of the enclosure. In this case it's a waterfall, a decorative piece of driftwood, the chamelon's tree, and a small shelter for crickets when they're looking to get out of the rain. Then I remove everything that they were sitting upon until I reach the mesh at the bottom of the enclosure.

The bottom of the empty cage

You'll notice a couple of flaws in the mesh on the bottom of the enclosure. That's because the bottom used to be the top, and the chameleon's basking lamps burned right through the mesh. The instructions for using the enclosure said that wouldn't happen, but - it did. Thus the top became the bottom and I covered the holes with duct tape. The mesh enclosure is sitting inside a plastic liner (scroll to the bottom at that link) which protects the carpet from moisture and other products generated within (*smirk*).

The first thing I do is place an assemblage of raised flooring on the bottom of the cage to provide an air gap between the bottom of the cage and the substrate above.

Flooring for the bottom of the cage.

Here is a photo of the flooring assembled on the bottom of the cage:

Flooring assembled and installed.

Then I spread weed blocker across the top of the flooring. Note that I do not cut the weed blocker to fit the cage - the roll is just sitting outside out of the way and still attached to what is lining the bottom of the cage:

Weed blocker contains the substrate.

The next step is to add the substrate:

The substrate added on top of the weed blocker.

Now comes the reason why I didn't cut the weed blocker as part of a previous step. I scroll out enough of the weed blocker to fold it back over the top of the substrate - and then I cut it. This prevents the chameleon's food from burrowing within the substrate and prevents the chameleon from accidentally ingesting it. It also gets wet, and holds a little bit of water on top of the weed blocker; thus there is some water which evaporates and never makes it into the substrate. Still more importantly, enclosing the substrate this way makes it very easy to remove during the next cleaning. I simply pick up all of the substrate at once, containing it within the weed blocker.

The substrate is now contained by the weed blocker all around.

Although I don't show the step here, I then cut one more length of weed blocker from the roll and place it as an additional layer on top of what you see in the photo above. This additional layer may be changed much more often than is necessary for the substrate, thus keeping a sanitary floor without having all of the work described here.

Much better!

The only step left is to replace all of the knick-knacks.

The finished job.

Though I'm going to save the details for a later post, the reason that I use this substrate, and the reason that I said that I like the substrate to be bone dry before placing it within the cage, is because of how I hydrate the chameleon. A lot of water - a lot - makes it to the bottom of the cage. This substrate is VERY absorbant. When water enters it, it soaks up even better than a sponge and distributes the water throughout its fibers. Thus the water doesn't present a drowning problem for crickets, and it has a better chance of evaporating before the next hydration. In addition, because it is so absorbant, it holds a great deal of water, thus providing for a lenghty amount of time between changes. In addition, when it's damp, it's helping to increase the humidity of the air above. It's quite useful.

Look forward to a future post on making it rain, automatically, every day.

Posted by Jeff at May 14, 2005 12:27 AM


Hey, how long have you had the cage? I'm in the process of getting the big cage for my veiled, but I'm hesitant about building one myself, or just buying one.
I was wondering about the one you had, you mentioned that it got burned by the lamps, so do you think it would burn again in the "new top".
I guess you have the 72", do you like it? would you recomend it?



Posted by: Cuau at May 18, 2005 06:32 PM

Hiya Cuau!

This is my second chameleon in this cage. I've had it about 2.5 years, I think, but about a year and a half of that it was rolled up and stored in my garage.

There's nothing really new about the top - it's just when I put it together for this new chameleon, I flipped it upside down to what it was before. The reason that it burned through was because the head lamps were extending past their hoods and were actually resting against the fabric. Now I've got them so that they're not touching.

A Reptarium is not a *perfect* cage, but it's the best to my way of thinking. If you think of a cage as being something that keeps the chameleon from getting out, then it's not the right cage for you. I don't think that way. In fact, I'd like to just stick some trees in front of a window, hook up a few spot lights, and then let the chameleon go cage-less.

So the point of caging the chameleon, for me, has nothing to do with keeping the chameleon inside, but it has everything to do with keeping the *crickets* inside. And I've not seen anything else for a chameleon that'll do that.

I've read that some people fear that the chameleon will get its claws stuck in the fabric - but I've never read of anyone having that happen. I *HAVE* read of chameleon's getting their legs caught in the bars of wire cages (and dying), though.

I'm guessing that people who use wire cages just stick crickets in a deep plastic dish of some kind, and the chameleon eats them from the dish. That way, they can have cages that don't need to contain crickets (or other bugs).

But I think that sucks. I go out of my way to make sure that the crickets are able to get around in the cage, because I think it's good for the chameleon to *hunt*. I mean, if you're a chameleon, what else have to got to do with your life? Hunting, it seems to me, is the only thing that I chameleon has to devote its mind to; otherwise, it's just got to sit there like a plant, or something.

So, yeah, I recommend it - I can't think of anything else that I'd use. The only thing that bothers me, really, is that I'd like it to be larger. It's something like 2.5_ft-by-2.5_ft-by-6_ft - I'd like it better if it was twice the size (2.5_ft-by-5_ft-by-6_ft).

Also, the one I got fit way too tightly around the poles, and I had to cut the poles down (the six that point from back to front) by about an inch each, in order to get it to fit loosely around them. That's important because the zippers on the things aren't that high of a quality, and they started to fail. Had I cut it down when I first got it, I think the zippers would be in perfect condition, but the way it came was just too much of a strain on the zippers. Maybe I got an odd one, or something. I don't know, but if I ever replace it, I'll make sure that the fabric fits a bit loosely around the frame.

Good luck!

Posted by: Jeff at May 18, 2005 10:29 PM

Hey Jeff,
I have read somewhere that crickets were able to chew through the material of a reptarium and I was wondering if you have had any problems with that. I have recently bought a 260 gal reptarium and am now in the process of conditioning my umbrella tree to begin set up. Also, how soon will you be posting your method of rain?


Posted by: chris at May 19, 2005 01:38 AM

Hello Chris!

I've also read that crickets can chew through fabric, which probably includes the material that a Reptarium is made out of. I've never seen any indication of crickets even trying, however. But, then again, they don't usually stay around very long and probably not long enough to succeed if they tried. I'm thinking that crickets would rather chew plants, or something, even if they did live in there for an extended period of time, anyway.

I'll post soon on how I make it rain. It involves a pump sprayer (like what is used to poison weeds on a lawn), a garden hose timer, a couple of fittings, some 1/4 inch vinyl hose (air hose for an aquarium, for instance), and some "foggers" made by a sprinker company. You can probably figure out what I've done just by that description.


Posted by: Jeff at May 19, 2005 03:48 AM

Hello. Just wanted to comment about the crickets chewing through the Reptarium mesh. I have a 65 Gallon, and the crickets aren't the ones to be worried about. It's the little beetles that mealworms become that will quickly chew right through the fabric. I have about 10 holes about 1/4 inch - usually in the corners of the cage. I thought it was the crickets, but I recently actually caught one of the beetles chewing on the mesh. Just thought you guys would want to know.


Posted by: Tin at May 26, 2005 02:43 AM

I have also found an example of chewing, but not through the mesh of the Reptarium. Instead, I've had butterworms (trevoworms) get loose in the enclosure, and they've chewed through two layers of the "weed blocker" plastic and then burrowed into the substrate.

I'm really having issues with the butterworms. I bought the smallest quantity available - 250 - and the chameleon doesn't seem to care much for them. Further, I suspect that they pack quite a calorie punch as compared to similar sized superworms or crickets (no chitin). And they burrow to hide, or they wrap themselves up in leaves which are made tight with silk - they're not the kind of thing that you can just let loose in the cage for the chameleon to catch on her own. I think I may wind up with a couple of hundred starved to death butterworms.

Posted by: Jeff at May 26, 2005 03:25 PM

I bought some silkworms and butterworms two weeks ago. My cham didn't touch one of them. People tell me that chams love silkworms, and that they're the best feeders (nutrient-wise) for chams, so I really want my cham to start eating them.

Jeff. Have you had any success with silks? Tin

Posted by: Tin at May 27, 2005 12:49 AM

I have not tried silkworms.

I think that the key, though, is cutting them off of the other stuff. My chameleon stopped eating butterworms until I stopped giving it anything else.

Posted by: Jeff at June 1, 2005 10:36 AM

this is a little bit off topic but does anyone know if it is nessisary to clip a chameleons claws there geting pretty long and i cant find information on weather thats normal or if i should do something to fix it?

Posted by: jhudas at August 26, 2005 09:58 PM

My chameleon (veiled) doesn"t seem to want to eat. I've had him for nearly 2 wks. please help

Posted by: Diana at September 1, 2005 07:03 PM

My chameleon used to eat all kinds of stuff...that is, it tried all kinds of stuff for a while. It'd eat mealworms, mealworm beatles, butterworms, flies, spiders.... I stopped giving it spiders when I read that they all have a certain degree of toxicity, and I've just not purchased flies again mostly because I've forgotten about them (until now). But the rest - the chameleon just clammed up and refused to continue to eat. It loves crickets, however, and I think it may have something to do with their motion, and maybe it has to do with the gut load that I feed them. At any rate, try different insects - I've never heard of anyone having problems getting a chameleon to accept crickets.

Posted by: Jeff at September 6, 2005 11:06 PM

do not clip ur chams nails .

Posted by: cameron at October 4, 2005 07:26 PM

my cham will try anything once but i mostly feed him silkys an crix. i just gut load my crix very well. a good commercial gut load then i always feed crix romain lettuce, apple slice with the skin, oranges, carrot shavings ,orange slices, blue berrys and boc choy also grapes. sound like alot but that is food that i eat also so there is always some in the fridge. My cham has gone on 2 hunger strike through his life . He is 2 years old now .My vieled cham {sloth} loves 2 eat blue berrys also. I inject the blue berrys witha very fine tipped syringe tha my GF uses for insulin a new 1 of course then i inject the berry with water an the cham gets a yummy juice berry. i mist my cham 2 times a day a half hour each time. I have made the same type of mister u r talking about . it worx great. have a good 1 eh... Cam from vancouver B.C.

Posted by: cameron at October 5, 2005 04:50 PM

I am looking at getting a chameleon. I have had one before, a few years ago, so I understand the rigors of keeping it. I am wondering what you feel is the best cage, and other stuff that I need. Also where is a good breeder I can get one from? Thanks

Posted by: Jared at October 10, 2005 04:40 PM

My cham burnt his claws on a light that used to be close to his cage, do these claws grow back? Has anyone ever had it before?

Posted by: Ruth at December 2, 2005 10:19 AM

I have a male veiled and he was a friends for a while after i had moved away. well i just got him back and he was not looking to great. i just got back from the store for all of the correct lights and stuff. I noticed that most picks i see the veiled males have black around there eyes well mine does not and i was just wondering if it was ok. I can post a pic if wanted.

Posted by: anthony at December 15, 2005 08:52 PM

i am setting up a new cage for my cham and i havent been able to find the weed blocker or the muly-tile. Where would be a good place to find those? And thanks for everything on your site its been such a huge help.

Posted by: lily at January 3, 2006 05:12 PM

Hmm...it looks like I've missed a few posts here, lately.

@Ruth: I don't know. I'd be interested to find out if it'll regrow its claws.

@anthony: I don't know what you mean about black around a chameleon's eyes. I don't think I've ever noticed that before.

@lily: I purchased both of those items at Home Depot, a north American hardware store. The weed blocker, at least, should be easy to find, especially in the spring and summer.

You might also want to look into other cage designs. I don't know anyone else who works out the substrate the way that I do. There are alternatives.

Posted by: Jeff at January 3, 2006 05:20 PM

I have been looking into cage alternatives and found yours to be a good one if you know of a better one or even others i would like to know where to find it.

Posted by: lily at January 3, 2006 05:45 PM

What plants are good to put in my Chams house? We just got him a fabulous new home, and the "plastic" leaves just look...blah! What real live ones are good for him?

Posted by: Chris at January 14, 2006 08:47 PM

hi, ummm i was also wondering about the mesh top...won't it also get burnt? i put the heating lamp on top of my aquarium and it melted the black lining.lol. i am maknig an aquarium like urs but how can i place the lamp on top. if the cage is really high will the heat make it to the bottom of the cage? can u email me bacjk and let me know what to do thanks.
ps. is it true that the bigger the cage, teh bigger teh cameleon?

Posted by: nathan at January 19, 2006 03:43 PM

my baby chameleon wont eat. i have two,and the boy is fine, but she wont eat what do i need to do?

Posted by: tonya at February 3, 2006 08:39 PM

Im planning on making a cage, I found that astro-turf works great for the bottom. All plastic so you just pull it out wash it and put it back in. You rest the astroturf on a floor (like wire fencing that will let excess liquid get through to the drip pan below. This is not necessarily better than the other floors mentioned, just another idea

Posted by: Taylor at February 5, 2006 10:11 AM

Hey, I use to own a vail as a young adult and loved it. My son wants a "lizard" but I have found he is intimadated by fast moving "lizards, ie: iguana, bearded dragon, nole, ect. I had a great idea (I think?) of buying him a pair of jacksons. How large of a reptarium should I purchase? My little one (9 year old)is anxious and I need to prepare first for the new duo. Do you know a good breeder? If you have any more good adivse please advise me. I am comfortable in what I am doing but I'm am still unsure for my son. He loves animals as do I but are jacksons the right choice? And what is a prime weather time for shipping? I'm in Oklahoma and it is currently 23 degrees outside on the first day of spring!!!! All info is appreciated! Summer.

Posted by: summer at March 21, 2006 09:25 AM

hi summer. u probaly dont look at these forums anymore but what the heck. I am a young adult myself and a chameleon isnt the ideal reptile for a nine year old unless its a parent kid thingt because of the amount of care they require. I would recomend a veiled chameleon{1}.
jackson both male and female are very solitary creatures like most chameleons as im sure you know so seperate caging is necessary. you probaly already have the chams by now anyways but whatever.

future cham owner.

p.s does anyone know how hard a veield or jackson chameleon bites????thx

Posted by: future cham owner at April 12, 2006 06:09 PM

i own 2 chams.. a veiled & jackson.. both male.. both in d same aquarium with a divider.. it saves me a lot of power coz the aquarium can contains much heat just even using a low-watt bulb.. but of course u just have to clean it more often than a well veltilated terrariums to prevent molds from growing which can harm ur chams.. still trying to figure out where to put them when they'll become an adult.. to summer: just read some literatures bout the chameleon or jackson before aquiring one.. thats what i did.. & it helps me a lot in owning 2 chameleons successfully.. for me its good to have the veiled than jackson.. u know, males have 3 horns.. just to prevent scaring ur child & nightmares.. just a thought.. c",)

my jackson --> http://img57.imageshack.us/img57/3715/jackson29al.jpg

Posted by: boracay at May 7, 2006 01:43 AM

I've owned turtles and tortoises (bog turtles, elongated turtles, etc.) and have done A LOT of research on chameleons, bearded dragons, etc. I plan on getting a peacock chameleon (wiedersheimi) but was wondering on their individual needs other than others. I will get a 175 reptarium and was wondering if i could either use coconut fiber or those large, bark chips, sterilized (about the size of half the palm of your hand). Also, i will probably put in two ficus trees and one of those exo terra warterfalls for moving water and to keep up humudity. I know that basking area should not exceed 80-85 degrees, but what type of wattage and bulb should i use? do chameleons might the strongish lighting from both a uvb light and heat lamp? Anyways, any other info. of links would help! Also, if i would get a bearded dragon, could i use a 260 gallon reptarium length wise? Thanks for the help!

Posted by: Danielle at May 11, 2006 05:10 PM

i need a perfect cage. i dont know much about chameleons but i plan to breed panther chameleon and i figured i should start with a cage. i want it big enough. i would like a tall one. any information anyone has about chameleons, cages, breeding, anything please e-mail me

Posted by: chelsea at May 16, 2006 05:53 PM

the cage at the top looks perfect. i dont even know what plants or what to put in. does anyone know if theres a place i can get a starter cage with things included. ;)

Posted by: chelsea at May 16, 2006 05:55 PM

i wish someone would talk to me....my screen name on AIM is crazichameleon if anyone has any information

Posted by: chelsea at May 17, 2006 03:32 PM

is mesh the best cage to get for a chameleon? is it what they like the best? how do you keep the lamps from burning the mesh? i really want to get 2 chameleons and then breed them..but i thought i should get a proper cage first...what would i need? where can i go to find the right chameleons and make sure they will mate? iam a little nerrvous of buying them online...should i be? please contact me at my e-male anyone that has information i cant wait to much longer for my chams cuz iam way to excited... thank you you guys for the information i already learned on the site.

Posted by: chelsea at May 18, 2006 03:56 PM

I have a young veiled chameleon, Zlegg the Dragonking, and I have vines running all through his cage, a couple fake plants and a Buddha statue, but I feel bad for him because his environment is so.... Fake.... I want to get some real plants to put in his cage so he can feel more at home, but I don't know what kind of plants to use. The only thing I can find out about that is, "non-toxic plants are acceptable" yeah, reeeeeal descriptive petsmart....

Posted by: Alex at June 13, 2006 02:54 PM

The plants that you see in my chameleon's enclosure are pothos plants, also called, I think, philodendrons.

The tree is a very common tree where I live (Utah) for an indoor tree, but I don't remember it's name. I've had several of them, but I'm unable to keep them alive.

I also have a *ficus elastica burgundy* plant (burgandy rubber plant) which I put the chameleon in when I run it in the shower. When I build a new cage I'll put it inside.

But keep searching around, you'll find advice. Think "chameleon journals" and "chameleon news".

Good luck!

Posted by: Jeff at June 13, 2006 03:29 PM

the cage at the top looks very nice..... i have had my veiled chameleon for about 4 months now and i love owning one... hes still really kinda small and im currently looking around for new things to feed him to see if he likes anything new instead of just crickets.... i constructed my cage out of an old ferret cage my girlfriend gave to me.... i screened it off and the cage works very well. this little thread was very helpful and i just wanted to say thanks for all the information you guys have put out there. i will try numerous things i have read on here. thanks again.

Posted by: Thomas at June 26, 2006 11:49 PM

hello i am looking for a plant to put into my chameleon cage can someone give me some advise?!

Posted by: chameleon lover at July 10, 2006 05:45 PM

Hey guys,
just read all the posts and looked through the site, and wanted to say that all the info is great. I just recently purchased a pair of veiled chameleons still very tiny...been feeding them gutloaded crickets...and they love them...just doing some research on the new housings...thansk for all the info.

Posted by: Anthony at July 19, 2006 11:19 AM

Hello chameleon owners,

I have a 6 week old baby chameleon my 1ts one did not eat for 5 days so a took him back and thy gave me another, he is called bud an he is really nice, he loves his crickets and i have tryed him on worms he does not touch them. But just got sum fruit flys got he loves them. he is dead fast eating them.

I love him

Posted by: David at July 21, 2006 12:07 PM

my chameleon will not eat what should i do?

Posted by: mason at August 16, 2006 03:51 PM

i was wondering how big chameleons get?I have had mine for about a year and he is getting quite big.Just curious how big do they get?

Posted by: Jesse Warner at August 31, 2006 12:15 PM

What is the best way to feed meal worms to a chameleon?

Posted by: Carlos at September 1, 2006 05:23 PM

Where can you get chameleon cages? i live in rochester,ny, so where do you go?



Posted by: cassidy at September 5, 2006 05:27 AM

hi im getting a chameleon soon and i wanted to know how much do they have to eat each day?

Posted by: usf at September 9, 2006 10:22 AM


A few questions for you. I bought a veiled chameleon 2-1/2 months ago. Hes getting big fast! So my wife and I want to get him a reptarium like yours. I want to setup everything very similar to yours. My issue is keeping it warm. We live in Reno, Nevada and it gets really cold during the winter time. So how do you keep the heat up to 85-90? Also you said the heat lamps burned holes through the top of the reptarium, so how far off the top of the cage do you have them? What watt heatlamps do you have? or are they basking lamps? We would certainly appreciate any help. you can also email me at kpj214@hotmail.com with your response.


Kyle and Kelly

Posted by: Kyle at September 15, 2006 05:02 PM

@usf: I feed my chameleon about 5-7 large crickets per day, about 5-7 days per week.

@Kyle: The heat lamps burned through my reptarium because I had put the bulbs in a fixture which wouldn't quite contain them. That resulted in the bulb itself actually being in contact with the plastic. After buying larger fixtures, I've not had any problem. My current set-up has the bulb about an inch away from the reptarium, though. I've accomplished that by putting two 1/2 inch thick slats of wood across the top of the reptarium, and the fixture sits on top of them and shines between them.

Incidentally, the slats are actually held up by a couple strings which go through holes in the slats, are knotted just under the slats (so the knots hold up the boards), and then the strings continue on down into the reptarium. I hang pothos plants from loops in the ends of the string. The other ends of the string are tied to hooks hanging from my ceiling. There is no weight on top of my reptarium (they are too flimsy for that). Everything weighted is hanging from the ceiling.

Someone else asked about feeding mealworms to the chameleon. I feed superworms to my chameleon by putting them on top of a lid (or something flat with a lip that they have a difficult time crawling over), then I hold it inside of the reptarium in the general vicinity of my chameleon and wait, patiently, for it to decide that its desire to eat is stronger than its desire to try to freeze to keep me from seeing it. What a pain.

Posted by: Jeff at September 15, 2006 05:37 PM

Also, Kyle: My set-up is just easy to get. It's not the best in the world. I suggest putting your mind and skills to the task of building your own design out of wood and pvc or plastic mesh. I'll get around to that soon myself.

Posted by: Jeff at September 15, 2006 05:39 PM

Thanks Jeff. I see what you are talking about from looking at your pictures closer. I think that I will end up making my own cage. Still curious as to how you keep that big of a cage warm enough for a veiled. What watt heat lamp do you use? How many of lamps?


Posted by: Kyle at September 17, 2006 06:34 PM

I use one of these and wouldn't even consider using anything else:


Actually, that's a bit inaccurate. I also have one of each of these in use as well:



But when I say that "I wouldn't use anything else", what I mean is that whatever else I also have, I wouldn't be without the active heat lamp. The other bulbs are just there for lighting the cage. And they're so old that (according to various Internet sources), they're probably not giving off appreciable UV light anymore, anyway.

The reason why I insist on the active heat bulb is because of the experience that I had with my first chameleon: it died of metabolic bone disease brought on primarily from inadequate UVB lighting. When it was x-rayed by the veterinarian shortly before it died, we could hardly see any bones at all in the resulting image. At that time, I was using just a flourescent tube (and the coil "bulb" should be thought of as a small coiled flourescent tube). It died a very miserable death and I felt really bad about it.

However, with my current chameleon I was determined that wasn't going to happen. When I went shopping for UV lighting, I saw ONE of those bulbs on the shelf at PetCo. It was priced $79.99(!!!) - for 100 watts. I couldn't believe my eyes...what could be so special about the bulb that it could cost $70 more than any other bulb???

I read the box and it gave one heck of a sales pitch. It detailed a study in which lizards had been kept in a sunlight free room with NOTHING but those bulbs and they'd all not only survived, but thrived even better than lizards getting daily natural sunlight (to my recollect - it's been a long time). A PetCo employee walked over and told me that they give a year's warrantee on the bulb - that if it burns out, they'd replace it. Well, I was determined not to allow my new chameleon to suffer the same fate as the old one, so I ponied up $79.99 plus tax and brought it home.

(Note that it was a 100 watt bulb for $79.99 and the Petsmart page above is selling 160 watt bulbs for significantly less...I just discovered that when I bought my new bulb about a month ago; the orginal bulb lasted about 18 months. So now I have a 160 watt bulb, which makes the reptarium look even better.)

Within 3 months, the chameleon had its first trip to the vet, and the vet could find no sign of bone problems. I wasn't satisfied with just looking at it, so I told him that I wanted an x-ray, and ponied up an extra $80 for the image. This chameleon's bones were *exceptional*. AND, other than this light bulb, it'd been receiving the same care as my previous chameleon.

Big difference.

Since then, I've had it x-rayed one more time, and it came through with flying colors again.

And here's one big reason, besides the quality of the light, why it works so well: it combines a heating bulb with a UVB bulb...and that's exactly what the SUN is to them. The heat encourages them to bask, and so they get the UVB light. With other basking bulbs, they bask for the heat and get no UVB for their efforts. It's counter to their nature.

As for temperature, I don't worry about it at all. Not only have I been told by a breeder that keeping them cool helps them to live longer, but I've seen pages on the Internet where people report that they regularly allow temperatures to drop to the low 40s at night for their veileds. I'm not concerned about it getting too hot because it's in the house, and I don't let my house drop below 60. Temperature is something that I've long ago stopped paying any attention to.

Then again, I've only had this one for about 20 months, and I've read where some people say that the first two years mean nothing, because they're hardy enough that it generally takes an amateur two years to kill a veiled through poor husbandry. (So use your own discretion.)

Posted by: Jeff at September 17, 2006 08:38 PM


That was very helpful! Thanks alot! I dont mean to pester you but we can tell you take good care of your chameleon. Now your ZooMed Reptisun 5.0 UVB is that 48" and where is that placed? Same question with the 20 Watt Super U.V. Coil Lamp. I dont see them in any of the pictures. Our Veiled's name is Kamo and what is your chameleons name?

We appreciate everything,

Kyle and Kelly

Posted by: Kyle at September 19, 2006 12:22 PM

If you look at the top picture at the right just a bit further than half way down, you can see the fixture which holds the "coil bulb".

The long fluorescent tube fixture is hanging on the right, clear back near the wall, vertically. It's about 4 feet long.

I don't consider either of these lights to be important at all, in terms of the health of the chameleon. They're there to bring light to the inside of the enclosure. That's why, for example, the coil-bulb is located near the bottom. Without these fixtures, the enclosure is very very dark. Not only does the mesh block out much of the light which would otherwise make it into the enclosure, but once it's inside the enclosure the mesh blocks its path back out of the enclosure. So there's a loss of visibility in two ways: 1) light entering the enclosure is reduced, and 2) you have to look through that dark and tightly woven black mesh to see into the enclosure. Mostly because of the latter, even with the fluorescent fixtures lighting it up all the way down, it still looks dark in there. (It looks nice in the photo because the front is open.)

If (when) either of those bulbs burns out, I'll still most likely replace them with UVA/UVB spectrum bulbs, but I don't kid myself about them being sufficient for the needs of the chameleon (partcularly since so much light is blocked from them by the mesh). I lost one chameleon that way, remember.

Posted by: Jeff at September 19, 2006 02:19 PM

I see exactly what you are saying! I am thinking that I will get (2) - of each of those fluorescent bulbs; (2) - 48" and (2) - coils . I will put them on opposite sides inorder to mimic the sun rising and setting. I understand that it will be hard to see in but when I am home from work I will have that open all the time! Again, your help is very helpful! We will keep in touch! Do you own any other reptiles besides chameleons?


Kyle and Kelly

Posted by: Kyle at September 19, 2006 04:32 PM


the 160watt is the better deal only costing $44.99 but wouldnt you think that would roast a chameleon? Maybe I would have to put it 2" away instead of just 1"?


Posted by: Kyle at September 22, 2006 02:57 PM

I don't have anything in my enclosure which would allow the chameleon to climb any closer than about 7 or 8 inches from bulb.

Posted by: Jeff at September 22, 2006 05:23 PM

My wife and I bought the 160 watt bulb and we also bought a dimming reflector for about $15! So we will see how it all works out. We got the 48"x29"x29" reptarium. We are looking forward to giving our chameleon (Kamo) some extra space to climb around!


Posted by: Kyle at September 25, 2006 02:54 PM

i was wonderig what size reptarium i need to house a veiled chameleon

Posted by: natalie at September 26, 2006 11:25 AM


How do you get the string to fit through that mesh of the reptarium? Is it fishing string or what kind fo string is it that hold your hanging plants?

Posted by: Kyle at October 2, 2006 05:47 PM

How does the water absorbed by the substrate evaporate? My dad brought up a good point about mildew?

Posted by: Alex at October 8, 2006 02:42 PM

ive read alot of these forums im just passing through i dont have cham's ive got beardies and an iguana and a chuckwalla im not gonna go on but this flexarium business im not thinking that they conserve heat very well and crickets etc eating the material who wants they're lizard to eat insects with a gut full of plastic or whateva ive got my own routine i catch all the crickets locust whateva im feeding at the time if they arnt eaten within the time they should be i take them out before my reptile and amphibians go to sleep best way ive found

Posted by: kerrie at October 13, 2006 12:16 PM

I have had my most recent cham for about 45 days. She is six months old. I have hand fed her her whole life and she is very tame. ie.. comes to the zipper when i open it and comes out on a regular basis. Now she stopped eating about three days ago, I've put crickets in the cage, tried waxworms and those are about all she eats. what do I do, what can I try??? What causes a hunger strike???

Posted by: amanda at November 12, 2006 12:21 PM

I just got a baby cham last weekend. Naturally I have questions:

1) Do I need to provide bedding or does it just perch on a limb to sleep?

2) Can it overdose on D3? If it's getting D3 from the UVB bulb do I need to give it Calcium supplemented with D3 or is that overkill?

3) What kind of light cycles do they prefer? Can you recommend a timer that I could set up the lights and a mister on?

4) I read something about proper distances from UVB/UVA lighting, what is the distance exactly? My cham love hanging out directly below the bulb. Is this bad?

Thank for all the info. I've learned a lot from your site. I tried to log onto the chameleon journals but they seem to be having technical difficulties.

Posted by: jen at November 14, 2006 11:06 PM

Im going to be purchasing a chameleon soon and iv never owned one. Iv been reading all kinds of info on the internet but i still have some questions. Since this is going to be my first one i was wondering if a 36x18x18 inch screened cage would be the right size. I would be placing it would be 36 inches high and not long. I would also like to know what wattage of heat bulb would be best, because i dont want it to be way to hot. I would also like to know whats the best humidity to keep the cage at. I thank you alot for all the help, and hope u can anser some of my questions.

Posted by: andrew at November 26, 2006 09:17 PM

To Andrew-I just built a 48 X 36 X 19" cage this past weekend. I bought All te materials at Home Depot and with some planning, it was done in a matter of hours with about 40$ of equipment. The bottom is a sheet of linoleum flooring, and I used plastic coated pegboard on the back, top, and sides, with the door on the right side, a plywood bottom, and the light built into the top (cut out and suspended/secured with washers) My Veiled Nixon absolutely loves the space. We also bought 2 4' dowels and cut the ends to the correct angle and screwed them into the pegboard. I can post a picture tomorrow. The humidity in my cage is usually 60-80. The wattage depends on the size of the cage, mine is an infrared heating lamp from Home depot (You also need to be careful what size clamplight/reflector you get based on the size lightbulb.) The hight of the cage and some width will allow your chameleon to have a comfortable temperature gradient, both up and down, and sideways. Thats why I find both a tall, and wider, rectangualr shaped base cage to be smartest in all aspects. The more space, the happier the chameleon.

If you have any questions feel free to email me at lalepepper@gmail.com
I'd be more than happy to help.
Hope I was able to help you out.

Posted by: Alicia at November 30, 2006 07:32 PM

i have a question and a coment. I saw one Question above about a Chameleon regrowing burnt toes or claws I'm not sure which, any way they cant. Chameleons are not capable of mytosis of any kind. now for my question I am going to build a duel cage wich a wall in the middle to house a vieled Chameleon on one side and a vieled chameleon on the other, I repeat they will not be able to see each other. this cage will be made from wood with no screen except for on the closed top in a space big enough for there lights. I am comfident, that I can provide adequite ventilation all that worry's me is that the doors will be made of glass and im afraid they will see there reflections and become stressed. My question is does any one know of a type of glass that wont reflect an image? here is a link to a site that shows somthing like what i want to build http://www.jworlds.net/woodland.html

Posted by: ChameleonDragon at December 12, 2006 01:21 AM

on my post earlyer i said i was housing two diferent chameleons but i made a typo one of them is not a vieled it is a jacksons

Posted by: ChameleonDragon at December 12, 2006 01:24 AM

Hello, I live in Zambia Africa. We moved here from NY in JUlY. This morning on our porch we nearly stepped on a baby cham. It is about the size of my thumb. We have been trying to feed him/her crickets(there is alot of them out here) but I am concerned they may be too big? I really dont know what to do for this little guy. I can set him loose but I think he would just die. We would like to keep him. What do baby chams eat besides fruit flies? The Locals here say they are piosionus, that they spit piosion like the cobras here..."wise tale" one of our friends, from the local bemba tribe siad he was fighting off a chameleon the other day?

Posted by: Shanda at January 8, 2007 10:19 AM

My cham had a calcium deficiency so we had to hand feed him. he's ok now, but he relies on us to hand feed him every day and doesn,t catch his own food.
Is there any way i can get him back catching his own food?

Posted by: Josh at February 18, 2007 12:36 PM

When will you show how to make it rain?

Posted by: scotch at April 21, 2007 08:18 PM

i like thes piichers my class is studeing about beatels

Posted by: samantha at May 2, 2007 02:24 PM

I have a baby vailed chameleon and I have tried giving him meal worms but they just crawl under rocks, hide, and then die. Currently my he is only eating crickets and I understand that they should have a variety. So any tips on how to get him to eat the meal worms? I have a bunch and that would be awsome if I could put them to use. Thanks!

Posted by: Carissa at May 12, 2007 11:31 AM

we have just bought a devils ivy for our chameleon notice one in your cage but have just read its poisonous and cham keeps trying to eat it any thoughts cheers

Posted by: dante at May 28, 2007 10:22 AM

nice i have to set this up . wat size reptarium do use. And what plants did you usehow many chameleons hve you owned?


Posted by: Juan Carlos at June 28, 2007 12:20 PM


How come u haven't written back to anyone? what wild caut insects should i feed my chameleon.? My Chameleon is almost 1 yeaar old should i feed it a pinky mouse? should i buy a 5.0 or a 8.0 UVB bulb.what size cage should i get it when it turns 1 year old? please write back
Juan Carlos

Posted by: Juan Carlos at July 2, 2007 10:12 PM

Jeff, I just have to say thank you for this awesome technique. I just picked up an apogee 175 gal 3 weeks ago and the softliner. I was just using Shop Towels and changing them like 3-4 times a week. That was way too much and way too expensive. Your way is so much more cost effective, useful, practical...uh...you name it!

Also, I used your idea of string and hanging plants. I got those big 2" hooks and screwed them in the support beams on the ceiling. Hung up all my plants with 20lb fishing line and it looks so professional. Just awesome!! I have also hung my heat lamps and grow lights (not the uvb 5.0) from the hooks. Custom fit them to hang just barely over the mesh.

Everything was very easy to find as we have a Home Depot here. The only changes I made were to the weed blocker lining. I was having a hard time sealing it so the crix wouldn't find their way inside. So I just took some 1/2" packing tape and lined it to the plastic tube base and the edge of the weed blocker. Now its all sealed off.

Thanks again!! So helpful..this should go in a book. :)

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weareexporters of reptiles in large numbers weedo export reptiles, insects, mammals,birds and many othersif there is any interested person out there should get to us for more detail and infos we are serious in the business contact person langmai barry dinga

Posted by: barry at July 12, 2007 07:15 AM

I need help with my Chameleons eating habits. I'm reading all these comments people have posted saying that their Chameleon wont eat anything other than Crickets or how much that they Love their Crickets. My Chameleon has stopped eating his Cricets! We've had Chameleon Gord for two - three weeks now and his previous owner fed him Crickets all the time. I believe that it might have something to do with us introducing him to Silkworms and Butterworms. As soon as he sees you coming with any kind of worm in hand, he will come running but you can stick Crickets in front of his face all day without any response. We've tried putting crickets in his feeding cup, letting them lose in the cage... Crickets that are three weeks old, and the larger Crickets as he should be eating. What else can we do? Should we hold off on the worms until he gives in and starts eating Crickets again or will he be ok with a variety of worms? Thanks.

Posted by: Shannon at July 19, 2007 08:29 AM

sum1 please help me.....what is the name of that thing from petco that is a cage that goes ontop of a 10 gallon tank???? e-mail me at gabby_o_world@yahoo.com


Posted by: gabby at July 21, 2007 07:07 PM

WE just bought a baby veiled chameleon 4 days ago and have tried to get as much of the same cage items that it had in the store to make its transition as simple as it can be. The issue I have is it has not eaten anything yet and is looking bad to me. Its been 4 almost 5 days and not even a nibble. Is this normal? do you know a way to get him back to eating? E mail me if you can help this little baby. Thanks

Posted by: DCLIBRA at August 25, 2007 09:01 AM

I did not put my full e mail in the posting. It is DCLIBRA65@AOL.com Thanks

Posted by: DCLIBRA at August 25, 2007 09:04 AM

I have had my veiled cham for two weeks now,At first i could pick him up and feed him from my hand but now he puffs up and hisses at me when i go near him.He is about seven weeks old now,will he grow out of this?

Posted by: Dave at August 26, 2007 07:06 AM

nice pics

Posted by: adamkwas at December 26, 2007 12:29 PM

hey dave no i had the same probolem and mine has never grow out of it

Posted by: adamkwas at December 26, 2007 12:30 PM

I need to find out how to build a cage for my veiled chameleon. what to put in it? And I NEED to find out why my veileds right eye is closed for part of the day. Just his right eye not his left. I love the little guy and not knowing much about them, I need to find out as much as i can.

Thnks Nikki

Posted by: Nikki at January 2, 2008 04:37 PM

for a cage make sure all sides and top are screen not glass they don't like to see their own reflection. Inside the cage they like alot of sticks(make sure that you boil them to get any bacteria off of them) they like fake plants to hide in and also a couple real plants like pothos or hibiscus i have a waterfall because they dont recognize water if its not moving if you dont want to use real sticks the pet stores sell bend a vine witch work nice.

Posted by: Justin at January 5, 2008 01:23 PM

HOw long do i have to wait while my vieled is sheding,, in order to hold him and carry him? I noticed that he is very grumpy when he is sheding. Or should i even try to hold him while he is sheding or just leave him alone?

If some one tries to reply to this notice e-mail me at da_playgurl2004@yahoo.com to reply.

Posted by: Nikki at January 27, 2008 12:52 PM

Also should I keep my little veiled in a 3 by 2 by 4 feet high cage. Or is that too big for him?

Posted by: Nikki at January 27, 2008 12:56 PM

I have the zoomed 5.0/40 watt bulb it is 48" long and puts off both uva/uvb rays---I have a all mesh reptarium, 100 gallon/48" tallx30widex16.5 deep. My question is : SHOULD I PUT IT ON THE INSIDE OF THE CAGE OR THE OUTSIDE? I'd rather put it on the outside so not to take up space but I'm concerned about it getting wet when spraying or mesh not allowing enough rays in. It doesn't seem to get hot enough to cause burns but will it still? Someone who TRUELY knows, Please post an answer-where's that guy JEFF? Please tell me what I should do!! My email is pixiemermaid@yahoo.com

Posted by: jennifer at February 1, 2008 10:47 AM

So hi. Its Jennifer. I posted the question above/re:48" bulbs--Anyway--TO answer my own question:-------I did some research and realized that the bulb I have should not be trusted to deliver "Paisley" (my chameleon) the uva/uvb rays if its mounted on the outside, but the 5.0 is ok if put on the inside of cage. But if I wanted one on the outside I should have gone with 10.0 48". Even tho reptariums have a great mesh, still the output is reduced/filtered bay 50%. By the way, the cage should have the uva/uvb thru out the whole cage-if it doesn't, then when your reptile moves away from the light, its not getting those important rays. Keep in mind the 10.0 projects up to 20" where as the 5.0 only projects up to 12".

Posted by: jennifer at February 2, 2008 08:45 PM

Iv kept my flapnose chameleon in a 5 foot ficas tree for 3 years in a bay window. Feeding her requires daily visits with shake and bake crickets though!!! I placed a small indoor electric fountain on a tall pedistal for water.
and a heat lamp pointing from the same direction the sun comes in from. She has never left the tree and is active and healthy but has a horrible disposition. Whenever someone gets to close to her she hisses and lunges at them trying to bite leaving herself dangling by the very tip of her tail is incredibly strong considering how thin it is

Posted by: Ron at February 7, 2008 05:50 PM

Excuse my failing to proof read above...

Posted by: Ron at February 7, 2008 05:53 PM

i need help i just got home and noticed my vail chamleon is slow and slugis . he was fine yesterday what should i do he is about 1 year and four months old

Posted by: ken anson at February 11, 2008 09:32 AM

Wat do u recomend? A vieled chameleon or a jacksons chameleon????

Posted by: manuel at February 12, 2008 01:06 PM

My chameleon, Marley LOVES crickets and house flies.
I get the flies from around the house.
Spiders are meanies to chameleons, they can make them sick.
So don't feed them any, BEWARE!
Marley eats hibiscus leaves for breakfast too:)

Posted by: Claire Bear at February 28, 2008 09:50 AM

I am buying a cameleon on 4-5-08 and was wondering if you had a suggestion of the age and type I should get. I have had one before, and it became really sick and acted like it had a broken leg.
I just need some pointers due to the fact I only had my first one for 5 months, he was very young.

Posted by: Angela at April 3, 2008 01:15 PM

I found a chameleon on the road and I want to know what I should make it's cage like I put in some leaves and a couple of branches but I'm not sure what else to put in, also if there is any other things I should check or see to please tell me.

Posted by: Sandy at April 8, 2008 07:58 PM

i heard a vieled can live with a crested gecko if they are both around the same size? is that true or no? my veiled is about the size of my hand and i've been interested about purchasing a crested gecko. and the guy at the pet store told me they can co-exist if they are about the same size, which the crested is. i know the crested is nocturnal so that why i was wondering if it could possibly work out. any suggestions?

Posted by: Aaron at April 20, 2008 02:15 PM

how do u feed the chameleon in the reptarium?????

Posted by: andrew at April 21, 2008 07:40 PM

Impressive amount of information. I'm picking up my veiled today, but am still a little confused about lighting logistics. I have a basking lamp (with a moonglow bulb) and will pick up the recommended reptile flourescent bulb when I get my little man. NO bulbs should be in the reptarium, right? "Just perched outside it" is my understanding of the lighting, but I don't like a lot of guess work when dealing with pets. :) Drop me a line when you get a chance, and I hope to correct any mistakes I might make. Thanks!

Posted by: Angie at April 25, 2008 08:50 AM

ive had my male veiled for about a year n a half now and hes doing great. screameleons.com has a lot of good information. although it is about panthers, much of the care is the same except veiled need it a little hotter and slightly less humid. make sure the uvb runs the entire length of the top of the cage. id reccomend a 10.0 flourescent and a 100 watt powersun bulb. these things are bad ass! along with giving heat it also gives off uvb which stimulates appetite, richer colors, and all around well being. definitely do not put the bulbs directly on the top of the reptarium. some wooden slats running the length of the cage should easily hold them a safe distance above. for watering i would reccomend the habbamist from zoo med. it has its own timer and duration settings and last for quite sometime. id always reccomend staying away from waterfalls as unsafe bacteria can build up. SPEND THE EXTRA MONEY! THE LAST THING YOU NEED IS INTERNAL PARASITES! vary the diet as much as possible and dont over do it on the supplementing. if so id reccomend jurassi cal as it dosent have all the other BS extras of vitamins, especially A, which crickets are rich with. GUT LOAD THE INSECTS! THIS WORKS INCREDIBLY! timers on the lights is a must. i usually go from 11-12 hours in the winter and about 14 hours of daylight in the summer. having a reptarium is convenient in the fact its all screen. i have the 100gal tall and have no substrate at the bottom. i constructed a rectangluar box thats about 20X35 and about 8 inches tall. the top of this box is a metal grate, allowing all the water to drip down into a rubbermaid tub i have below. its extremely easy to dump out at any time you please and is so much cleaner and cost effective, considering the ammount youd spend on substrate. to add humidity i have lined the back and half of each side with black trash bag i cut to size. this channels the water down very well. if your chameleon is not eating, make sure you have it to the right temp and have UVB! THIS IS SO CRUCIAL. if u have that it may be something bigger, which you should go to the vet. if youre not prepared to pay for the vet bills DONT BUY THIS ANIMAL! too many a year die from improper husbandry. lets keep these rare and beautiful reptiles alive and well and help keep there numbers from diminishing which they already drastically are, especially on madagascar. ive been the reptile specialist at a smaller store in northern california for two and a half years and would love to help anyone out. you can e-mail me at Rowleyboy01@hotmail.com

Posted by: Bobby at May 21, 2008 07:06 PM

p.s. always house them alone, the only species which seems to do okay with one another is the brookesia minima, or the pygmy stump-tailed chameleon. lots of pet store people are dumb. these animals are extremely sensitive.

Posted by: Bobby at May 21, 2008 07:09 PM

would somone please email me and tell me what kinds of plants i can put in my veileds cage i dont want to get wrong kind and he eat it and die because it was poisonos

Posted by: hunter at June 16, 2008 12:32 PM

oh my email is slayer66624@yahoo.com

Posted by: hunter at June 16, 2008 12:33 PM

somone please send me email soon thanks

Posted by: hunter at June 16, 2008 12:34 PM

My 3 chams absolutely love pinky mice. I mean they see a pinky and come running (as fast as a cham can run that is). Does anyone else feed their chams pinky mice? I have had mine since early March and they growing and eating at a rate I had not quite expected. How many crickets do you go through a month with chams? For my 3, 2 femsles, 1 male, I go through more than 1000 a month, plus whatever pinky mice I will give them. Is this too much?

Posted by: Victoria at July 14, 2008 10:25 AM

i am going to be building a tank out of plexiglass and wood. what do cham. experts recommend for wood? i read about not using pine. what can i use that wont affect anything.. please help, my girlfriend is begging mne for this little guy...

Posted by: dave at July 21, 2008 07:06 AM

Hello Jeff,

I recently found out about these new feeder insects that are 3 times more nutritious than the cricket as it has a high meat to shell ratio. Also they don't smell, they live from 1 to 2 years, and the best part is that they breed rapidly that you wont' have to worry about ever having to purchase food for your chameleon again. It's lobster roaches, not many people know about them, but a lot of pros are starting to switch over. The only cons about them I guess are that they are gross, and that they can climb. But that can be easily solved by putting a layer of vaseline on the container. I'm thinking of switching over, but just wanted to know what was your opinion on these?


Posted by: Nohemi at August 3, 2008 09:01 PM

I like your veiled chameleon a lot.

Posted by: Ricardo at August 7, 2008 12:54 PM

hello im really liking for set up... i have a few questions. Iam getting a chameleon in the next day or so i want to make sure every thing is perfect and SAFE for my chameleon. I was wondering what type of substrate you use and where did you get the weed blocker?
Also i have the same water fall as you ... do you still mist the cage often? or have a drip sytem? Or is the water enough?
if you could get back to me that would be great!

Posted by: kelly at August 7, 2008 02:41 PM

i am trying to build a chameleon cage what should i make it out of e.g. what sort of mesh and wood

where can i get the materials from

what plants can i out in the cage


Posted by: Elliott at August 12, 2008 02:49 PM

Hi Jeff,

Awesome website with great chameleon info. Not sure if you can help with this, but I now have my second chameleon, a veiled male, and he is the most ornery critter I've ever had. My first chameleon was such a love, he would actually come to me for attention as I walked by his habitat, and crawl into my hair, he was easily handled and never complained or behaved aggressively. So you can imagine, I thought chameleons were amazing (and still do for the most part), but this new guy! I've have had him since he was just a few weeks old, and he has never had a good temperament. Even now, 6 months later, he hisses at me if I come near him, even if I am holding a cricket to feed him, he is hissing and lunging at me as he plucks it from my fingers. He is now very big and very healthy, but also a little scary. I have been bitten by him once as I often have him walk onto my hand in order to eat crickets, to get him used to human hands, but as soon as he realizes he is on my hand, he goes for a finger. Is this normal male veiled chameleon behavior? Was my first chameleon just very special? Or do I have a particularly nasty chameleon? Any thoughts or advice?

Jennifer N.

Posted by: Jennifer at September 23, 2008 09:08 PM

Dear sir,
We are exporters and traders that can trade on Payment upon delivery.
we trade on Dried Beetles dried insects and live Chameleons.

get to us if interested to do long time business


Posted by: barry at November 18, 2008 08:41 AM

Hi there,i have looked extensively on many sites for any info regarding noise affecting Chameleons.To get to the point im shortly going to get a chameleon.....now i have done ALOT of research but cant find anything regarding my subject.I aim to keep my Cham in my living room,however i LOVE my xbox and movies on a home cinema system.....i am concerned that if i had the volume at a good lvl to apreciate great sound if this could stress the Cham.I know this is an odd Q? but i am taking everything into consideration before i rush out to buy 1.If anyone has any clue over noise possibly affecting chameleons i would sure be greatefull to be enlightened thank you.

Posted by: Neil at December 10, 2008 03:33 PM

I was wondering,
Do any kind of Chameleons eat JUST fruit and veggies? If so then what kind. Also, if they only eat bugs, will they eat them dead?
Another question is that I read that if you play with your Chameleon too much, it will get mean. Is this true? If so, then how many hours a week, do you think, can i play with it. Please give me a few tips. Thanks so much!

Posted by: Erika at January 5, 2009 06:38 PM

I was wondering,
Do any kind of Chameleons eat JUST fruit and veggies? If so then what kind. Also, if they only eat bugs, will they eat them dead?
Another question is that I read that if you play with your Chameleon too much, it will get mean. Is this true? If so, then how many hours a week, do you think, can i play with it. Please give me a few tips. Thanks so much!

Posted by: Erika at January 8, 2009 03:41 AM

do plants for chameleons have to be real or can they be fake

Posted by: tim at January 12, 2009 09:50 PM

what is the easiest and the lowest-maintnece water dripper. I rather not have a plastic cup beside my heat lamp on top of the chameleon cage. Any suggestions?


Posted by: Casey at February 3, 2009 04:32 PM

Hi. I need some help. I want to know if I need to have a high humidity in a chemilian enclosure, as if it is a net enclosure, surley humidity is always same as the room levle. so is high humidy nessary for chemilians. What do you do?

Posted by: Harry at March 15, 2009 11:46 AM

I would think that a auto plant watering system, with the timer, and a fine nozel to facilitate spraying, would work well.

Posted by: Harry at March 15, 2009 12:07 PM

Chris mentioned "conditioning" an umbrella tree. I understand why, but how?

Posted by: Bob at April 10, 2009 02:21 PM

im thinking about getting a veiled. i am a kid, only 11. my dad is going to help me care for the chameleon, but i was just wondering, where should i get a chameleon? like one thats really healthy? i read you can get them from pet stores, breeders (everyone tells me this is the best place to get one) and mail ordered (which i dont prefer). they all have pros and cons though! can someone tell me what the best place to get them is? oh and if my cham gets sick, can i just take it to the regular vet, or would we need to contact a specialist?



Posted by: Amanda at April 18, 2009 04:32 PM

i posted something a earlier. i just wanted to know what kind of trees, not plants, i should put with my veiled. pleeaaassseeee someone post back!!!


Posted by: Amanda at April 18, 2009 05:03 PM

Hi again! another quick question. if i get a cham thats 3 inches long and put it in a big enclosure (the one i will use when my cham gets older) will it stress the animal, or will it really matter that i get a small one?

Posted by: Amanda at April 18, 2009 07:00 PM

uh yaa wat should i feed my mealworms cuz im trying to keep them alive and i dnt knw wat to feed them. i just got them like today and just wondering... plz reply

Posted by: curious cham owner at April 18, 2009 07:12 PM

Hi there. I have my chameleon in a Zoomeds forest enclosure as per the per stores instructions. I used the substrate inside the forest kit & I am having a problem with my drip system midewing the substrate. Is there anything I can do to avoid this from happening anymore? Thanks!

Posted by: Amanda at May 6, 2009 12:00 AM

I'm looking at getting a jackson chameleon and I am getting a reptarium 16.5"x30"x28" and an exo terra waterfall/fogger. I will also get calcium sand and a uv light with a fixture for it. is there anything else I should look into, and how will it do if it is in my basement in my room where it is around 70 degrees and dark usually if i dont have my lamps in my room on, cause i only have one window.?

Posted by: Paul at May 20, 2009 08:02 PM

I have a jackson chameleon I purchased from a man who had caught him in the wild a while back.
He's about 4inches from head to base of tail. I need help with what kind of plant to grow in his cage.
If it helps I live in hawaii and his cage is outdoors.

Please email me at dr.mesteban@gmail.com

Posted by: daven at June 1, 2009 05:19 AM

hey i really like your chameleon setup and am plannning to get a 260 gallon reptarium for a veiled chameleon with a ficus and 3 pothos because it seems to work really good with you

1 question is i wanted to get a mercury vapor bulb for heat and uv but i am worried about the screen burning


Posted by: cristian at July 7, 2009 02:34 PM

ok.. so.. i bought two baby veiled chams the other day.. ive been feeding them crickets twicce a day but have never acually seen them eat. i dont see any of the crickets so they are either getting out or.. the chams are eating them. but today i came home from school and one cham was on the bottom of the cage.. it had a tent of brown and it scared me so i sprayed water and put in some crickets.. he climed right on back up and got on the plant.. this happend again aboiut an hour later.. should i be worried.. or do you think he just fell off the plant? also he is somewhat skinnier than the other one... what should i do?

Posted by: jean at September 9, 2009 04:05 PM

I have just purchased a new cham. we have a good set up but only have artificial plants. i was wondering what real plants are good for chams as i have heard they like to eat greens but also some plants may be toxic. if you can advise me it would be a great help.


Posted by: George at November 15, 2009 02:36 PM

My chameleons are a few weeks old and they wont eat the crickets in the mesh cage. The girl is shedding, and the boy only eats if the girl is on his back(i put them in his mouth when he open it), but neither of them will shoot out their tongues and catch them themselves. What do i do?

Posted by: Zeke at March 1, 2010 05:58 PM

I recently acquired a male veiled chameleon from petco. it wasnt planned, i was there to buy another tree frog and the manager was discounting it because it was miserable in the tiny cage. so, knowing nothing but what i gathered from internet searches, i brought him home. hes about 6 inches from head to tail and he is being kept in a 10 gallon aquarium (larger than the one he was in at petco) until his reptarium arrives in the mail. i went for a 24x24x36 cage to start til i can figure out something better. he has a basking lamp and a 5.0 uvb light as well as aton of plants. im keeping the temp between 65-85 and the humidity between 50-80 and giving him 14 hours of light and ten of darkness. he eats 4 or 5 crickets that i feed a gut load and he seems to love climbing onto my arm and trying to escape when i clean or mist him =] he has a mini dripper and i am looking into a mister. because this littleguy has stolen my heart i reallly want to know what else i should be buying/doing and if what i am already doing needs to be modified? any input would be amazing!

Posted by: Jackie at March 28, 2010 01:49 PM

hey Jeff, I need a little help. My veiled stopped eating and drinking....has sunken eyes...mostly closed. I have been researching and found that it could be dehydration.

what do you think, shall i just keep misting the plants, will that help?

Posted by: Shiven at June 4, 2010 01:11 AM

I didn't buy it, it just came to me..i just opened the door and there it was, looking at me :)....i luv it so much...

Posted by: Shiven at June 4, 2010 01:14 AM

Dear Jeff,
I am a complete beginner with chameleons in fact my only experience with reptiles is owning two leopard geckos. I'm doing diligent study on taking care of them but I must admit I'm very nervous about their specific requirements. I really want to build the enclosure my self and really admire what you have going on there. I would like to know more about the construction of your cage so that I can use some of them as ideas for my own. As much info that you could give. Your cage is one of my favorites so far. Me and my future Veiled Chameleon would really appreciate it. Thanks!

Posted by: Vanessa at February 22, 2011 05:54 PM

It's called a "Reptarium", Vanessa. Check out their website: http://www.reptarium.com/

Posted by: Jeff Healey at February 22, 2011 07:27 PM

About to acquire a Jackson and was told his born was broken off in a fight, but will grow back.... is this true? Please answer to my email thanks

Posted by: Tasha at April 11, 2011 11:13 PM

my chaeleon drinks from a dish even tho i mist his enclosure twice a day

Posted by: brittany at August 6, 2011 03:54 PM

do u no why? answer to email please thank you

Posted by: brittany at August 6, 2011 03:55 PM

I'm building a cage for my chameleon what wire mesh should I use to keep the crickets in the cage

Posted by: frankie at October 5, 2011 07:15 AM

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