Chameleon Question - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-14-2003, 12:37 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
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Question Chameleon Qusetion

My little brother bought a tiny little chameleon from the local pet store a few months back. Not sure what kind, but it was tiny...maybe 2.5 to 3 inches total length, and brown....sometimes light brown, and sometimes dark. Anyway, unfortunately, after about 2 weeks, it died. My little bro was devistated (he loves ALL reptiles). He kept it in a 20 gallon hex fishtank with dirt and fake plants in the bottom, and a branch for it to climb on. The guy at the local pet store said this would be fine for him. Fed it tiny little crickets, and a moth or fly now and then. Had a little saucer of water at the bottom of the tank he changed every day. The little critter ate well, and seemed ok, but I did read that when they turn "dark" in color, something is wrong...stress or illness, and he did turn pretty dark a few days before he died. My brother said he sprayed him down daily with room temp. water. My feeling is that the environment wasnt warm enough....had a regular fish tank hood and bulb on the heat light, so the tank stayed room temp....70 degrees maybe. Too cold? Not moist enough with just one spray a day? My brother wants to try another one, but Im really uncomfortable with it until we figure out what he did wrong. I'd hate to see another one die. It's just wrong! Im so upset with the local pet store guy who said he didnt need a heat light, because I'm thinking that was the problem. Any info would be greatly appreciated by myself, my brother as well as the next chameleon!!
Angel13 is offline  
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-14-2003, 05:35 AM
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Oh man, I'm about to write you a book, lol!

First off, what kind of chameleon was it and what kind does he want to get this time? There are tons of kinds and they require very different temps and humidity...

I was researching chameleons for months before I got mine and I'm still a little worried for her! I don't know what kind of cham you're thinking of, so I don't know specific temps, but in general they need a heat gradient. They need a heat lamp pointing at a basking spot (hottest spot in thier cage) and cooler areas to go to if they get too warm. They also need a UV light (zoomed 5.0 is a highly reccomended one) that they can be within 12 inches from. Also, chameleons don't do well in glass enclosures because some (possibly all) are solitary and will try to fight with thier reflection, they won't know that there is a wall there and will keep trying to climb through it and stress themselves out, and they don't have very good ventilation. They also need LOTS of stuff to climb on since they will spend all thier time in the branches, and they need a mister or drip system (or you can do it manually) to get thier water, from everything I've read, most chameleons will not drink out of a bowl of still water (they need the drips to catch thier attention. Have your brother look for care sheets online of the specific type of chameleon he wants to get the right temps and humidity levels, my advice is to get the whole setup in order lights heat and all, make sure you can keep them at the right levels, and THEN go get the chameleon. A good setup can be expensive! My chameleon was given to me, but I wound up spending over $100 putting together a decent enclosure.

There were a lot of things that could have happened to the other chameleon, could have been the temperatures, he could have been sick when he came to you... no telling In case you couldn't tell, I just got my cham and I'm chock full of research material If there's anything else I can help with, I'd love too! Another member (Ravnos) is very knowledgeable about herps too, I'm sure he'll be around!
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-14-2003, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Becki. Im not sure what kind he was....but will definately make sure my little bro. will do everything right next time around. Im actually interested in one myself, always have been, but never educated myself on them, so never got one....well a real one...I have a tattoo of one ! Maybe I'll help little bro this time so I can get educated and get myself one too!
Thanks again.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-14-2003, 10:56 PM
Join Date: Mar 2002
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Angel, next time you guys get one, you might want to buy it from a breeder on the net. That way you know what you are getting and you know wether it was captive bread or wild caught. Captive bread is always better. lists reputable breeders.

Here is a website that I have on my favs as a possible breeder I might buy from in the future.

I'm glad that you are interested in helping your brother. My little bro did the same thing with lizards when I we were younger. Now I have a rescued iguana and a bearded dragon. You may end up a reptile lover too.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-14-2003, 11:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Lizgirl! I will put those links on my favs as well for future reference.
Angel13 is offline  

bearded dragon, fish tank, local pet store, pet store, reputable breeder

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