basking temp for baby chameleons

fliver

New Member
my boyfriend and i are getting a baby chameleon for the first time. :D we have done loads of research online and in books. we got our cage all set up and are waiting till tuesday to get him. we ordered him online from reptile depot...since we live in michigan its really hard to find baby chameleons. he should be about 4 weeks old when we get him (4-6 inches long). anyways, we have a hygrometer/thermometer and unfortunantly it didn't come with a probe. but we set it on the branches in the upper corner where his basking spotlight is. the temp is 94 degrees. the clamp light is over a foot above the cage because if it was any lower it would get up to 100 some degrees. the light is a zoo med 75 watt basking spot light. and when you put your hand in the cage up where his basking spot is it really doesn't feel too hot at all. should we move the light even higher to get the temp between 85 and 90 or is 94 ok?
 

Julirs

New Member
First off, you need a UVB light-there is no waiting on this one-it is a necessity. The basking light is good, but temps for a baby should not be higher than 85-they do not adjust their body temps well at that age. If he is around 4 weeks old-expect something more like 2-3" total length. If you post a picture of your setup, people on the forum will help you out with any tweaking you may need.
 

Julirs

New Member
Another thing, even if you live in Michigan, don't be afraid to mail order from a good breeder. I have gotten all 7 of my chameleons from Mike at FL Chams. He lives about 2 1/2 hours South of me here on the East coast of Florida, and I have received all of my chams (except one that I picked up from him at a local show) via UPS overnight, and they all have arrived perfectly healthy. The funny thing is that they usually leave his house, and then fly to Louisville, KY through the UPS hub before flying back down to Clearwater. I track their progress online everytime, but they all came out great! Good luck and we look forward to pictures of your little one!
 

fliver

New Member
sorry i guess i should've stated that we do have a zoo med reptisun 5.0 uvb bulb above his cage also.
it ranges from lower 70s at the bottom of his cage up to 80-85 during the day. so having a basking spot light at 85 seems kinda pointless plus itd have to be like 2 feet above the cage. but if we have to do it, we will. on most sites its said about 85-95 for the basking light for babies.
i will hopefully get a pic of his setup today.
 

Julirs

New Member
Sounds like you have everything ready! The one thing I learned (the hard way) was to have a very good thermometer. Actually the one I have cost less than $10 but has a probe on a long wire so that I can test different spots in the cage. A temp gun will be my next purhase. The lights on a smaller cage will keep the upper part toasty, but they will hang out in the basking spot for long periods, so I would not go much higher than 85, increasing that as he gets bigger. My big male Veiled's cage is 24X24X48, and my house stays at about 74 degrees year round as does most of his cage, but his basking spots(2) are now is at 95 and he is 8 months old.
 

fliver

New Member



here is a pic of our cage
we're going to take the cardboard and newspaper out from the bottom
and put in either a cage liner if they have it at the store today
or a towel
 

Julirs

New Member
See if you can find the Softray that goes with that Reptarium-most big chain pet stores have them. I wouldn't use a towel-they will get nasty and full of bacteria fast. At best just put some plastic in the bottom with paper towels if you would like. Make sure there is no plastic or glass between the light and the cage-some of those fixtures have a plastic lens over them that will not let UVB pass through. Does that fixture have a metal reflector? One more suggestion, I use 10.0 bulbs because someone on the forum here tested UVB through the dark Reptarium mesh and the dark mesh filters out a lot of UVB.
 

fliver

New Member
yea if the softray isn't at the pet store today then we were gunna order one online and we'll probably just try the paper towel in the mean time. as for the light, there is no plastic lens over it. it does have a metal reflector, is that bad? you can't see any reflections in it. thanks, i've never heard about using the 10.0 bulbs, we'll that that into consideration. would that raise the tempurature too much?
 

John33871

New Member
yes get rid of that newspaper, very bad idea. that can mold very quick and baby chameleons will not be able to fight that off to well. i would recommend getting a ficus tree so your little guy will have more hiding places and will fell much safer with more hiding spots. how are you feeding? free range or cup? be careful with that mesh, crickets can chew threw them and get out. i would recommend getting a basking light. the heat allows the chameleon not only a way to get warm but to help them digest their food properly. anyways other than that not a bad set up
 

fliver

New Member
Reflector is good and 10.0 will not raise temps at all.
we just got a 10.0 bulb last night
our little guy is still not shipped yet
:(
my boyfriend also added a drain system for the water that drips into the plant
and he made a good cage liner for the bottom
 

Julirs

New Member
Post pictures when you get him! New babies are always exciting! I always found them to be smaller then I thought they would be-but my male Veiled who was maybe 5" at 8 weeks when I got him is over 16" at 8 months-they grow before your eyes!
 

Dean Pulcini

Avid Member
Watch out with reptile Depot I have had bad experience with them and im not the only one . When your chameleon arrives check it out very closely and If it looks sick at all call them or send it back asap.
 
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