Any advice for new chameleon owner

Rodya55

Member
Hey, looooong loooong time lurker first time poster. I’m gonna be welcoming a 3 month old panther chameleon tomorrow. Just wanted to get any advice or criticism on my set up so I know what to fix.

Right now the cage is sitting on a tilted drain tray. I put mesh on the bottom of the reptibreeze so no bugs can escape yet it can still drain. I’m not sure if it has enough plants up top by the basking branch but I think I remember hearing that some open space around the basking zone was recommended. It’s around 7-8 in from the top of the cage to the basking branch. I’m gonna try another bulb or try raising the lightbulb dome since it gave me temperatures of 97°F even though it’s 60 watts. I’ve got a mistking and a fogger. Also I do have a plant light (Sansi grow) that I’ll have running every now and then to help with plant maintenance. Do you guys think it might be too much light?

One last thing I’m aware that artificial vines aren’t really recommended but I think I’ll throw them out soon if I see any wear and tear. Thanks for any responses!!!
 

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MzLaurie11

Avid Member
Congradulations on your new addition. I.like your setup but you might want to get some zip ties and branches to have on hand to add climbing aparatus for the baby. 3 months will be tiny and will double is size every 2-3 weeks still you might need to add things to make it easier for him to get around. Also you have the insides of the cage walls covered which is probably why the high heat. You might have to remove one or tape them on the outside. Dont forget to use a cup with a stick sticking out for the small crickets to climb out on and make sure its wedged good in case the cham in case he goes in :).
 

Rodya55

Member
Gotcha, I did switch over to another bulb I got from home depot and got the basking temperature to around 92°F. Thanks for reminding me about the cup and the stick, that’s a great idea 👍
 

Thatcher

Chameleon Enthusiast
Gotcha, I did switch over to another bulb I got from home depot and got the basking temperature to around 92°F. Thanks for reminding me about the cup and the stick, that’s a great idea 👍
Ideally for a baby panther I would recommend a hot spot of 82-84 with a max of 85 to reduce risk of burns, as babies they can't absorb as much heat and 92 is a lot for even an adult! If it's still getting hotter than 85 with lower wattage bulbs I would recommend raising the heat bulb on some peices of thick wood or coffee cups.
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
Ideally for a baby panther I would recommend a hot spot of 82-84 with a max of 85 to reduce risk of burns, as babies they can't absorb as much heat and 92 is a lot for even an adult! If it's still getting hotter than 85 with lower wattage bulbs I would recommend raising the heat bulb on some peices of thick wood or coffee cups.
For a cham that age, you want the basking temp to be 80°F at the top of the cham's back. An adult male's would be 85°F, and an adult female's would be 78-80°F
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hey, looooong loooong time lurker first time poster. I’m gonna be welcoming a 3 month old panther chameleon tomorrow. Just wanted to get any advice or criticism on my set up so I know what to fix.

Right now the cage is sitting on a tilted drain tray. I put mesh on the bottom of the reptibreeze so no bugs can escape yet it can still drain. I’m not sure if it has enough plants up top by the basking branch but I think I remember hearing that some open space around the basking zone was recommended. It’s around 7-8 in from the top of the cage to the basking branch. I’m gonna try another bulb or try raising the lightbulb dome since it gave me temperatures of 97°F even though it’s 60 watts. I’ve got a mistking and a fogger. Also I do have a plant light (Sansi grow) that I’ll have running every now and then to help with plant maintenance. Do you guys think it might be too much light?

One last thing I’m aware that artificial vines aren’t really recommended but I think I’ll throw them out soon if I see any wear and tear. Thanks for any responses!!!
Congrats, and welcome on here! How exciting! What locale and gender did you go with?
 

Rodya55

Member
Congrats, and welcome on here! How exciting! What locale and gender did you go with?
Thanks! I think It’s a male Ambilobe, looks to be fairly decent in size. It’s definitely older than 3 months, not too sure about the age tho. I was targeting around 90 degrees for the basking should I go lower or do you guys think he can handle that?
 

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Rodya55

Member
To be fair I got him at Petco, I know it’s better to find a breeder. But this little guy was the love of the entire store they had a vet who works in store take a look at him because he had an eye irritation. Once he got all better they sold him to me, a lot of them were sad to see him go. Here’s a pic of his poop think he’s a bit dehydrated. Have been running a dripper throughout the day along with a mister in the morning and evening and briefly at 3 pm. Gonna try to set up the fogger for the night. Here’s a pic of the poop.
 

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ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thanks! I think It’s a male Ambilobe, looks to be fairly decent in size. It’s definitely older than 3 months, not too sure about the age tho. I was targeting around 90 degrees for the basking should I go lower or do you guys think he can handle that?
Yup, he's either a male Ambilobe or Ambilobe cross! Could you post a pic of him with something to size reference? Depending on his age, his basking spot should be either 80°F or 85°F, 90°F is too hot
To be fair I got him at Petco, I know it’s better to find a breeder. But this little guy was the love of the entire store they had a vet who works in store take a look at him because he had an eye irritation. Once he got all better they sold him to me, a lot of them were sad to see him go. Here’s a pic of his poop think he’s a bit dehydrated. Have been running a dripper throughout the day along with a mister in the morning and evening and briefly at 3 pm. Gonna try to set up the fogger for the night. Here’s a pic of the poop.
Definitely find an experienced and reputable chameleon vet then since he's from Petco. Doa general check up with x-rays, a fecal (bring a fresh one with you, and try to drop off 2 more afterwards to make sure no parasites were missed), and bloodwork if he's old enough and the vet is comfortable with it. What are your nighttime temps, and is your fogger a cool mist or warm mist fogger?
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
Also, you'll want to take the moss vines out and replace them with something safe, they can cause health issues.
 

Rodya55

Member
Yup, he's either a male Ambilobe or Ambilobe cross! Could you post a pic of him with something to size reference? Depending on his age, his basking spot should be either 80°F or 85°F, 90°F is too hot

Definitely find an experienced and reputable chameleon vet then since he's from Petco. Doa general check up with x-rays, a fecal (bring a fresh one with you, and try to drop off 2 more afterwards to make sure no parasites were missed), and bloodwork if he's old enough and the vet is comfortable with it. What are your nighttime temps, and is your fogger a cool mist or warm mist fogger?
I’m currently running this one. I’ll try to take a pic of him with a can tomorrow, trying to give him some time to settle in. He is next to the Govee hygrometer tho if that helps. Gonna try to find a vet tho. Usually at night my house and his cage it’s around 72 degrees. During the day his cage is around 77 - 80.
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
The link isn't working, could you screenshot it? If you could get your house down closer to your nighttime temperature during the day, it'd be better. For fogging, it shouldn't be done unless the nighttime temp is at or below 65°F
 
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