- How to care for a chameleon?
- About Chameleons
- Which chameleon is suitable for home use?
- How to choose a chameleon?
- Home Chameleon Conditions
- Chameleon Nutrition
How to care for a chameleon?
Chameleons belong to the class of reptiles. The average size of these tree lizards is 30 cm. The smallest specimens do not grow in length to more than 3–5 cm. Large individuals can reach 50–60 cm.
The head of males is often decorated with tubercles, ridges, and pointed horns. In females, these bulges on the head also exist, but in their infancy. The legs of the chameleons are long, the fingers are in the form of claws. This limb structure helps lizards easily climb trees. The tail also helps, it is thick at the base, and gradually tapers towards the end. A chameleon can wrap a tree trunk with its tail, a branch and hold tenaciously.
The organs of vision of these lizards are also interesting. The eyes of the chameleons have a circular view and can rotate asynchronously, which helps reptiles in tracking and catching insects.
When a chameleon hunts, it may not move for a long time. At this time, only his eyes rotate. When an insect appears near a lizard, the chameleon creeps up to it, sticks out its long tongue and makes it a lightning grasping movement, which takes only a third of a second. Helps in this and the suction cup at the end of the tongue. Prey sticks to it and ends up in the mouth of a reptile.
Chameleons are also famous for the fact that they can change their color and become almost invisible. against the background of wood, foliage, due to the characteristics of the skin of the reptile. There are chromatophore cells in it, in which there are pigments of yellow, reddish, black, brown colors. Under the influence of thirst, hunger, fright and other factors, enhanced pigmentation is manifested. over, the colors can mix, thereby forming various shades.
Which chameleon is suitable for home use?
These lizards can live in an ordinary apartment, in a terrarium. But you need to know the conditions of the chameleon, then the lizard and in captivity will be comfortable.
If you want a nice large reptile to settle in your house, then yemeni chameleon (in the photo above). This is a fairly hardy reptile that adapts well to new living and housing conditions, tolerates changes in humidity and temperature. The price of such a reptile is about 700-1000 UAH
In the wild, this species of chameleon lives in hot countries. in Saudi Arabia, Yemen and there are two types:
- Calcarifer lives in eastern Saudi Arabia, so it’s used to being in hot and dry climates.
- Calyptratus lives in the north of the country, where it is slightly cooler. Therefore, he will feel good at home in a terrarium, where the daytime temperature is 30 ° C or slightly higher, and the night temperature is about 20 ° C. This type of chameleon has a richer color and is larger in size than Calcarifer and can grow up to 60 cm in length.
Here are some other chameleons suitable for home use:
These species are also not picky and less demanding of the conditions of detention.
With good care, the lizard will live with you for 4 years, and the Yemeni chameleon may well bring offspring, for this you need to purchase a male and a female. But two males cannot be put in one terrarium, as they will fight, defending the rights to the female, and at the same time they can cripple each other.
If you keep young chameleons together, put in a terrarium plants that will form dense thickets so that each lizard lives on its territory and in this way conflicts can be avoided.
How to choose a chameleon?
Home Chameleon Conditions
The size of the terrarium can be 50 x 50 cm (width, length) and 120 cm high. For females, a slightly smaller terrarium is suitable, and for a large reptile, it should be slightly larger.
The temperature inside the terrarium in the daytime should not fall below 28 ° C, optimally. 30 ─ 32 ° C. The night temperature should be 22 ─ 24 ° C, so place the house for the animal in a warm place where there are no drafts. they are very dangerous for the lizard.
Well, if the terrarium is spacious. Then at its different levels the animal will find the most comfortable place for itself. Inside, decorate the reptile room with potted plants. You can put the processed snag along which the chameleon will climb. He also needs a small pond, take care of this.
It is still necessary to make a small pump inside the terrarium, which will create a stream of supply water. After all, these reptiles in the wild drink water only from the leaves of plants, which lies on them with droplets.
In addition to the temperature, it is important to observe the light mode. natural, artificial or combined. The daylight hours must be at least 12 hours.
In the summer, during the daytime, take out the cage with an adult reptile on the street. The reptile will enjoy eating insects with pleasure. To attract these, you can put rotted fruit next to the aviary. If the nights are warm, you can leave the cage with a chameleon on the street or keep the animal at that time in an open-air cage. Of course, it is necessary that he had a roof that would protect against rainfall.
To prevent young chameleons from getting dehydrated (which they are prone to), spray the terrarium twice or thrice a day with water.
Adults are fed from a feeder or tweezers with large crickets, tropical cockroaches, they offer fruits, fleshy leaves of some houseplants, which they eat with pleasure.
A low plastic or glass container is suitable for the feeder. Its inner walls are lubricated with vegetable oil so that insects do not scatter.
Chameleons can’t drink from a tank, therefore, if it is not possible to make a pump, try to teach them to drink from a syringe with a blunt needle or from a pipette. If this does not work out, inject small doses of water to the chameleons in their mouths when they open it.
These lizards, in addition to water, can drink juices. Prepare a honey solution for them, which the animals will also like.
If you follow these recommendations, then the chameleon will live with you for at least four years and please the owner, his family throughout this time with his charming appearance, funny habits.