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Enclosure Specifications

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A few things to consider when deciding on an enclosure

Consider the size requirement of the species you are getting. Remember most chameleons are arboreal (tree dwellers) and prefer height over length. A good size  is calculated by using the guide (HBL = snout to vent length or base of tail)

For arboreal (height loving tree dwellers) species

short side of bottom = 3 x HBL - long side of bottom = 4 x HBL - height = 6 x HBL

For terrestrial (ground dwellers) species i.e. Brookesia

short side of bottom = 4 x HBL - long side of bottom = 6 x HBL - height = 4 x HBL

  • A good cage for chameleons will be screen on at least three sides- they need fresh air, avoid glass and plexi-glass - the reflection causes stress (seeing another cham) and STRESS KILLS.

  • You should be able to maintain a noticeable temperature gradient - depending on species some as much as 30 degrees from basking spot to cool down. Remember they regulate their body temp (cold blooded) thru basking.

  • It should allow good humidity control, not too open and not all solid walls.

  • It should be able to sustain a lot of watering without rotting or rusting.

  • It is best if feeder insects can not escape, but the screening used should be open enough not to cause injury to your cham's feet and resistant to crickets eating it.

  • You should be able to place a basking light and/or a UVB light on it without melting or burning the walls.

  • You should be able to view your chameleons but there should be plenty of leafy cover for them to hide in. They do not need ground cover i.e. hollow logs.

  • They do not need water bowls or bottles, they drink droplets off of misted leaves (moving water).

  • They need lots of various size branches and vines to climb around on. This lets them exercise those very strong hands and legs.

  • Substrates are not recommended with chameleons. They can be ingested and cause impaction leading to premature death.

  • Live plants are recommended. some species of chameleons will actually EAT the plants. If a tropical house plant can not survive in your enclosure then it is not right for the chameleon either. Most have very similar requirements.

  • You need a to use BOTH a basking light a regular 60 to 100 watt light (depending on the size of your cage and species of cham) works fine and florescent (ZooMed's REPTISUN 5.0 ) UV lighting.

literature cited (2, 5, 6, 7, 9)Link will open in a new window.


 

Some Product Links

Lighting

 Zoo Med ReptiSun Compact Fluorescent UVB LampLink will open in a new window.

 Zoo Med ReptiSun Compact Fluorescent UVB LampLink will open in a new window.

 Zoo Med Reptisun 5.0 Ultraviolet Flourescent Bulb 36inLink will open in a new window.

 Reptisun 10.0 High Output UVB Lamp - 48 in.Link will open in a new window.

 Reptisun 10.0 High Output UVB Lamp - 24 in.Link will open in a new window.

 PET LIGHT BULB MERCURY VAPOR 100 WATT R30 FLOOD SOLAR BRITE REPTILE LAMPLink will open in a new window.

 T-REX ACTIVE UV HEAT LAMP 100WT FLOODLink will open in a new window.

 Zoo Med Economy Clamp Lamp for ReptilesLink will open in a new window.

 Zoo Med Reptile Lamp StandLink will open in a new window.

Temperature/Humidity

 Fluker's Digital Thermometer / HygrometerLink will open in a new window.

 Maverick Remote-Check ET-7 Wireless Thermometer with 2 ProbesLink will open in a new window.

 KINTREX Clear Temp IRT0421 Non-Contact Infrared Thermometer with LaserLink will open in a new window.

 Super Accurate Adjustable Round Digital HygrometerLink will open in a new window.

 Timex TX5170 Indoor/Outdoor Thermometer with Indoor Hygrometer and ClockLink will open in a new window.

Enclosures

 Terrarium and Cage Construction and CareLink will open in a new window.

 Reptile Screen Cage Chameleon Lizard 24'' X 24'' X 48''Link will open in a new window.

 Zoo Med NT-1 Naturalistic Terrarium 12in x 12in x 12inLink will open in a new window.

 Zoo Med NT-2 Naturalistic Terrarium 12in x 12in x 18inLink will open in a new window.

 Zoo Med NT-3 Naturalistic Terrarium 18in x 18in x 18inLink will open in a new window.

 Synergy Cage Wizard Reptile Tank Cleaner 16 OunceLink will open in a new window.