Bay Window Free Range

Discussion in 'Free Range' started by TubaJon, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. TubaJon

    TubaJon New Member

    Hey ChamFam!

    First time Cham owner here. I've had a juvenile veiled from FLChams now for about 3 weeks. Even though I am a first time Chamer, I went big with a free range setup. I had this large bay window in our solarium, and I just couldn't not do it! I would like to ask for some input on how the setup looks to you now, and ways that it can be improved.

    As you can see in the pics provided, the setup includes:
    -2 Palm Plants
    -Vines everywhere.
    -1 UVB Lamp
    -1 Heat Lamp

    As you can see from the readers, humidity levels are an issue. 50% is about the average humidity level. What are some ways that I can raise that level with this type of setup?

    Temps could be higher. 70 seems to be the average there. I am thinking about getting a space heater just for that room. Especially with Cincinnati winter coming. There is a vent that pumps a bit of air in from the central system, but its not a bunch. Should I just go ahead and get a heater?

    Finally, I have some issues concerning feeding JarJar crickets. For one, he won't eat when I am in the room. So monitoring is almost impossible. And he won't eat out of a cup. So the crickets also need to free roam, which makes me nervous. Is there a way to get him to eat out of the cups? Or does that just take time.

    I love the little guy, and he seems for the most part to be happy. He is definitely not used to people. Every time myself or my wife opens the door, he is immediately not happy. I have been handling him every day for about 10 minutes at a time to try to get used to that while hopefully not stressing him out too much. That would be my one criticism of FLChams, or maybe I am just naive. But I would assume that they would have been handled more, to at least where they aren't super afraid of people.

    What do you all think!?


    Attached Files:

    Arpretty likes this.
  2. KingGoodman

    KingGoodman Member

    This looks like a really cool start. It seems you are going to have real trouble keeping this area warm enough. He has a regular enclosure right? Is this just a play area?

    In general it’s better to avoid the red bulbs as they can cause vision issues and sometimes burns. Better to use a plain incandescent bulb for basking or one of those ceramic heat emitter bulbs.

    For plants, those palms will provide cover and a sense of safety but they will be really hard for him to actually climb on. You might add an umbrella tree which most Chams love.

    Did you try to make a feeder cup with a screen for the crickets to crawl around on? YouTube has videos on how to make them. Just search chameleon feeder cup.

    He will get used to you guys. Just move slow and bring reward bugs. Make sure your handling interactions are as positive as possible.
    TubaJon and Arpretty like this.
  3. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Avid Member

    Get either a T8 or t5HO linear 10.0 uvb bulb (Zoo Med) and fixture, get rid of the red light, get a regular white light heat incandescent bulb from the hardware store instead, add more plants and vines, 50% humidity is fine for a veiled, what’s the temp in the basking spot? Make your own feeding cup out of PVC pipe, a jug, or a container or buy one from Full Throttle Feeders. Don’t handle him that much! And if you do handle him, make sure it’s only with positive reinforcement, like hand feeding, outside time (in summer of course), etc. Chams are like fish, look but don’t touch. Don’t blame it on FL Chams, they didn’t do anything wrong. Could you fill out this form, please? I would move your cham into a cage for winter since the window might get too cold, as well. I would actually keep your cham in a cage year round and use the free range as positive reinforcement, but that’s just my opinion. It’ll help with feeding, heating, and uvb absorption as well. Make sure to get a minimum 2’ by 2’ by 4’ tall enclosure, preferably screen, if you do this
    TubaJon likes this.
  4. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Avid Member

    The veiled care sheet here is a great resource, as well! I recommend reading it if you haven’t already.
    TubaJon likes this.
  5. Brodybreaux25

    Brodybreaux25 Chameleon Enthusiast

    Welcome to the forum!

    Chams are not pets, they are a hobby. Your criticism of FL Chams is totally unfounded. The starting point for every Cham is to handle as little as possible. As they mature and decide to willingly come out of their space, that’s different.

    If this is his “home” and not a play area you are going to struggle to provide him with the conditions he needs to thrive. Sounds like you are already starting to find that out. I hope you take the suggestions above seriously, I agree with them.

    Providing @ERKleRose the information she requested would be your best course of action.
    ERKleRose likes this.
  6. KingGoodman

    KingGoodman Member

    So every chameleon has a different personality. Some chameleons beg to be picked up every time they see you and others it’s less often. This is for a variety of reasons and basically there isn’t always rhyme and reason to it. is basically one of the best breeders in the world right now. That may not always be true but they are on their game. Half of the “getting started with chameleons” articles you read will tell you never to handle them, so it’s not a stretch to understand that not all of them like being held. There are some species that seem to “mind it less” and rare jewels of a pet that love being handled. Be patient. Take your time. Reward them and train them.
    TubaJon likes this.
  7. Mawtyplant

    Mawtyplant Avid Member

    So two major things on your freerange :
    Your heat bulb : he is gonna get a burn faster than you can even imagine or cause a fire (this lead to a more dramatic burn indeed :/)
    Your UVB : the only good and save uvb source i notice for a freerange is the exo terra sunray (metal halide bulb)

    i will show you some picture of my freerange setup but for a start make yourself sure the uvb and basking are strong and high to prevent termal burn (make yourself sure he can't reach the bulb (put some tape on the cords)

    Other than that its cool! i suggest you a dripper because this is less messy and add some horizontal perch :)

    TubaJon likes this.
  8. Jesspete

    Jesspete Established Member

    In an area this large, would the basking and uvb need to be near each other? I know my guys spend most of their time basking, and if the UVB was several feet away, they probably wouldn't get much.

    ERKleRose likes this.
  9. Jesspete

    Jesspete Established Member

    and my IMMEDIATE concern, is your little guy is reaching out and touching that lamp (it looks like it). He can get severe burns that way, and chams heal very slowly. You want to limit their access to the lamp, and keep it several inches from them, so they don't burn their casque.
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  10. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Avid Member

    In my personal opinion, yes they should be near each other.
  11. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Avid Member

    Yes, both bulbs should be out of reach of your cham, if it doesn’t get hot enough out of reach, get a higher wattage
    TubaJon likes this.
  12. KingGoodman

    KingGoodman Member

    I would suggest putting the basking bulb and uvb bulb in different places, separate from one another. You don't want your chameleon needing to bake himself everytime he needs to get some sunlight. The basking bulb is for thermal regulation and the uvb is for life but he shouldn't need to heat himself up to get some uvb.
    TubaJon likes this.
  13. Jesspete

    Jesspete Established Member

    I would think that if that were the case, the uvb bulb would have to be quite large. With a space that big, and the cham seeking light for heat, he may never wander into the area that uvb is penetrating. The windows also offer light, but no uvb. If you don't have it nearby where you know he's going to spend some time, he may not get enough. I suppose the alternative is to watch where he tends to hang out, when not basking and place it there.

    I strongly suggest searching the forums for some other free range setups. I'm sure this has been addressed before. I have kids and a dog, so no free range at my house, unless it's outdoors.
    ERKleRose likes this.
  14. KingGoodman

    KingGoodman Member

    In most enclosures, just a foot or two of space between them is enough to allow the chameleon to choose between them. I had not considered how the window would affect the chameleon’s movements though. I will definitely do a search here on the forums for free range setup discussions. Great idea
  15. TubaJon

    TubaJon New Member

    -This is his permanent living situation. It is in an enclosed room, so even if he were to come out of the bay window, he can't get lost anywhere.
    -I will go ahead and change the bulb! Thanks!
    -I kinda figured the palms would eventually need to go. I just happened to already have them, and figured I could change as he grows.
    -I will check out YouTube.

  16. TubaJon

    TubaJon New Member

    Thanks for all of the specifics on suggestions. Ill be sure to check it all out.
    -The basking area normally sits at about 80.
    -I will address the handling situation with Brody's post.
    -I also have concerns about the window getting too cold, and have been sure to observe closely. I can't see any hints that he is trying to stay away from the windows to find warmth. In general, he actually hangs out closer to the windows.
  17. TubaJon

    TubaJon New Member

    Thanks for taking the time to reply. To be sure, I have other reptiles, and am fully aware that they are not meant to be cuddly creatures. My more specific concern was about the reaction to even seeing a person in the room with him. Climbing away as fast as possible and falling off of limbs does not seem normal to me. Sure, unwanted handling is one thing, but you would think the little guy had been abused or something.
  18. TubaJon

    TubaJon New Member

    I certainly don't mean to sound like I am taking on a king of the industry. I would definitely be okay if he turned out to be one of the majority with not wanting to be handled. But it would also be nice to have struck gold and have one that does. From everything I have read, that happens through patience and daily handling. My question to FLChams would be that if I were to have bought and adult through them, would my expectations be that they would have never been handled? And therefore, the formative years to establish that sort of relationship would have been lost.
  19. TubaJon

    TubaJon New Member

    Ill check out the bulbs! Thanks! And he has a dripper already :)
  20. TubaJon

    TubaJon New Member

    Ill see if I can't move it higher. I wanted to make sure it was low enough to get heat. To be fair though, this is the only time I had ever observed him touching the lamp. He was a little phone camera shy.
    Jesspete likes this.

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