Best brand of Enclosure/Lighting?

zookeeper19

New Member
Hello!
I absolutely love chameleons but am holding off on that project until I have a bit more stability in my life. Right now, I am looking at keeping some kind of semi-arboreal agamid. I know this is not ideal for this forum but you all have the most experience with screen enclosures and heating/lighting/hydrating them, so I figured I would ask here. Anyway, I was curious what brand of screen enclosure you all prefer? I know there are zoo-med repti-breeze, zilla, and exo terra. Also, has anyone had any experience with the zoo-med enclosure that comes with led's? I have seen the lightyourreptiles quad mentioned a few times so that seems to be a solid option, but I know opinions vary a lot in this hobby so any other suggestions would be great. Thanks so much!
 

Syreptyon

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hello!
I absolutely love chameleons but am holding off on that project until I have a bit more stability in my life. Right now, I am looking at keeping some kind of semi-arboreal agamid. I know this is not ideal for this forum but you all have the most experience with screen enclosures and heating/lighting/hydrating them, so I figured I would ask here. Anyway, I was curious what brand of screen enclosure you all prefer? I know there are zoo-med repti-breeze, zilla, and exo terra. Also, has anyone had any experience with the zoo-med enclosure that comes with led's? I have seen the lightyourreptiles quad mentioned a few times so that seems to be a solid option, but I know opinions vary a lot in this hobby so any other suggestions would be great. Thanks so much!

DragonStrand has the best quality enclosure and Arcadia has the best lights (y)
 
Reptibreeze cages are fine for your standard chameleons (24x24x48).. Don't buy a kit - it's garbage. Buy the things you need for whatever critter you're keeping, individually, based on their needs. I have several Retibreeze cages, all 2-3 years old, with no rust issues (might just be that I don't have much over spray from my mister, since it's single nozzle and points down in each cage - if you do this route, do yourself a favor, and get the Dragon Ledges from Dragon Strand to hang things from. Worth every single penny, and will save your sanity. If you can't get responses from LightYourReptiles, buy Arcadia bulbs from Pangea, and your fixture from any marine supply place - I have a 4' Corallife T5HO fixture, I just add applicable bulbs to. It's cheaper then LYR, and comes quicker. (ALL of the plastic bulb clips in ALL of my LYR fixtures are brittle and broken, and he can't seem to get any replacements, and I'm not buying new fixtures) Pangea packs their bulbs to withstand almost anything. I don't have a Dragon Strand enclosure yet, but I have one on order, so I can't comment on that yet...
 

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have reptibreeze and diycages and the reptibreeze are cheap and flimsy. They serve the purpose but for the same price I would get the diycages.com cage, which is aluminum and slightly sturdier. Still not a great cage IMO. I have a Dragonstrand being built and another picked up soon and am eager to vhdck them out. They look great and have to be a huge improvement over both the reptibreeze and diy cages
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have a dragon strand enclosure and Arcadia UVB T5 HO with a quad fixture from lightyourreptiles.com Highly recommend both. I have had a zoo med cage and the thing made me crazy. The screws kept trying to come out so it was never quite secure. I finally had to hot glue them in to make them stay but with the moisture this did not last long. I had the cage for less then 4 months and it was brand new when I got it.
 

zookeeper19

New Member
How many bulbs do you recommend for a 24x24x48? I am thinking two, one uvb and one for plants, as I still need space for a heat lamp. I would like to heavily plant it , but I can't afford dropping $300+ on lighting alone. Also, they sell single bulb ballasts for $30 on pangea's website, would it be ok to use multiple of these instead of a multibulb fixture?
 

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
I bought both a dual and a quad light from lightyourreptiles. Definitely get the quad, I think you’ll be disappointed in the dual. I’m using a dual for my 15” wide enclosures and its enough to light them but with the 24” enclosure the quad is the way to go.
 

zookeeper19

New Member
If I were to go with the smaller dragonstrand cage- 17.5x17x36, what would my lighting options be- there is not a quad fixture that is short enough.
 

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
I think that may end up being too small eventually and then you’ll be stuck upgrading again. I’d bite the bullet and get the bigger everything. I wish i did, instead of getting the smaller enclosure for the youth stage. I’m going to use the cage for another purpose, but otherwise it was a waste of money and short lived.
 

Clayton0520

Avid Member
I have a dragon strand XL breeder series cage and a double lamp fixture with an Arcadia 12% and a 6.5k lamp. I absolutely love both of them. I purchased my lighting fixture and bulbs from Light Your Reptile and was ABSOLUTELY SATISFIED!!! Both are AMAZING companies.
 

iMi

Established Member
I would agree on cost. It may not be an issue for you, but you should be aware. The setup, proper lighting and a good misting system, variety of feeders. It all adds up fast. I have also spent upwards of $1,000 easily at this point.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
XL DIY-$120
Monsoon Solo with extra nozzle $110
Pothos $50
ZooMed T5HO 24" w/ 10.0 bulb $75
ExoTerra deep dome with 100w basking bulb $40
Humidifier $40
Grapevine $60
Feeders $20/week
Timer $25
Supplements $40
Thermometer/hydrometer $20
Temp gun $15
Total=$610

As you can see it adds up fast and I didn't even put the price of the chameleon on the list. That is what I would call the most basic setup on a budget. Anything less than the setup I have would probably be inadequate. And I'm sure some people on here will say what I have is inadequate as well, but my setup works for me and my cham and thats all that matters for right now.
 

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
Another difference I just thought of is that my quad fixture has internal fans and has a low hum to it where my dual does not. Both are from lightyourreptiles.com and are very nice, but the quad still leaves some dimmer areas within the 24” cage. I think the dual would leave me wanting more light.

I use the dual 30” to cover my 2 small reptibreeze cages (15x15x30), and the 36” quad to light my 2 DIYcages.com (24x24x48).
 
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