Best feeder bugs to start with for new panther chameleon owner?

WashingtonCham

Established Member
I’m getting my first male panther chameleon next month and I’m looking to pick up a few different kinds of feeder bugs so that I can have them pre gut loaded and maybe even breed them depending on how hard it is. But I’m wondering what feeder bugs I should start with. I was thinking Dubia roaches and crickets but how many different kinds is enough variety? And do you guys just buy superworms once in a while or other non substantial feeders as a treat? I’m planning on just putting some feeders in clear plastic bin drawers in my shed and putting a heat lamp near or a heating pad under each.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Id wait until a week before you get your Cham. Crickets die and grow so fast! You could start with some really small dubias. They take a little longer to grow. I usually buy hornworms and Superworms as needed. But always keep no less than 30 crickets and no more than 80.
 

WashingtonCham

Established Member
Id wait until a week before you get your Cham. Crickets die and grow so fast! You could start with some really small dubias. They take a little longer to grow. I usually buy hornworms and Superworms as needed. But always keep no less than 30 crickets and no more than 80.
This was my biggest concern was that I’m gonna get him home and not have any pre gut loaded insects or not enough variety.
 

WashingtonCham

Established Member
Black Soldier Fly Larva are also really great for young chams and high in calcium!
Are they easy to keep alive and raise? Ideally I’d like to be able to raise my own feeders at some point but having only one chameleon idk if it’s even worth the time and effort? But if it’s better for my chameleon I’ll do it. I’ve heard that a lot of store bought bugs are raised on bran or carrots and so if your able to raise your own it may be healthier? But I also have a job so I don’t have all day to mess with bugs lol.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
BSFL are easy to keep alive but trickier to gutload. Honestly crickets poop so fast and digest so quickly everything the store fed them is out of their system in a day or two. Which is why it's important to gutload for 24-48hrs prior to feeding. Crickets carry the most nastyness with them but I don't think anyone likes to breed there own crickets for the sake of their noses. Dubias are an awesome easy stable feeder to breed and keep alive. Also slightly healthier and don't carry the nastyness of crickets!
 
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