Bottom of the cage??

Discussion in 'Health Clinic' started by webghost, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. webghost

    webghost New Member

    So my Jackson Chameleon lately has been spending a lot of time at the bottom of the cage. I picked him up a few times and his body is very cold. Not sure why he is avoiding the hotter temps up above where the basking light is and he also doesn't seem to move much. He is very sedentary. He also eats very little. I try to feed him 1-2 crickets every other day and a mealworm once every 3-4 days. He is 7-8 months old. He has a 60watt heat lamp and a UVB bulb at the top generating heat around the 60's - low 70's .. is that to low?

    Here is a pic of his enclosure:
    PIC: Enclosure

    His color is green and so I know that is a good sign but other than that, I am clueless as to why he is not much active, not eating as much and spending more time at the bottom of the cage. It has only been like this for the past 2-3 days. Is this something I should be concerned about? Am I doing something wrong or do they go through these phases... Any help would be appreciated.

  2. Elizadolots

    Elizadolots New Member

    If you are feeding appropriately sized crickets, you are not feeding him enough. Your basking temperature should be around 80 degrees. The bottom of the cage can be 65 degrees, that's not a problem.

    I think your enclosure might be a bit overly dense. That might be part of why it's cooler than it should be. You might thin out the artificial vines so the light can penetrate a bit more.

    If it were my chameleon, I would be pushing high calorie food like worms in hopes of stimulating his appetite. I don't know how big your chameleon is, but my guess is he should be eating 4 or 5 full size crickets a day.
  3. webghost

    webghost New Member

    He is around 7-8 months old. The problem is I waive the crickets in front of him and he does not seem much interested. Do I need a 60 watt bulb for my enclosure or a 75? I put the 75 and it was very hot so I took it out.
  4. Davonat

    Davonat New Member

    Get yourself a thermometer and check the temp at the spot where he would bask. Adjust the wattage accordingly. Also make sure its not too close to your UVB bulb....... He may want heat and not UVB.You do have a 5.0 reptisun, dont you? He would try and get away from a desert bulb and hide at the bottom of the cage. My cham has the option of chooseing which lite he wants to soak up. What exact bulbs are you useing? Basking spot lamp? Flood lamp? House hold? Lighting will definately effect his appetite.......You said he 7-8 months old, have you had him since he was little? Or is he new to you?....
  5. Elizadolots

    Elizadolots New Member

    You don't need to wave crickets in front of him. Just put them in the enclosure and let him hunt them.

    You can adjust the height of the bulb to reduce temps if necessary, but really, it can be quite a bit warmer without it being a problem.

    I almost feel like the excess plastic vines are at the root of the problem. Cull them down to "travel paths" so your chameleon can navigate the enclosure and see how that plays. They love to be able to hide among the leaves...I'm not sure they love to have to push through the leaves to move about their enclosure.
  6. Lintini

    Lintini New Member

    I think so too, it looks lovely but I think there is just too many plants in there for him. I ended up taking some of mine out too!
  7. webghost

    webghost New Member

    Great questions. So from what I know he is 7-8 months when I picked him up from our local pet shop. I did not have him when he was small so I don't have his exact birth date. He is brand new to him (a little over 3 weeks now). I have the reptisun 5.0 and just yesterday evening added an additional heat lamp providing a little more heat. I currently have the UVB lamp, 60 watt heat lamp and an additional 50 watt basking lamp. I checked the temp this morning and it was in the mid 70's which I also noticed he was finally sitting up top. I think it was just too cold for him and due to the cold he was sedentary. Thanks for the great advice!
  8. webghost

    webghost New Member

    Question though, I heard there should be some blocking so he doesn't see you as they get frightened and stress when they see you walk by. That is the only reason why I put all those plants but I guess I should take some of it out huh..
  9. webghost

    webghost New Member

    You got it. I will definitely do that tonight when I get home. With all the stuff in his case, I doubt he can even hunt let alone see the crickets
  10. Davonat

    Davonat New Member

    Here is what I would do.......Remove a bunch of those vines, get more light down into his cage. Run a benda branch or something across the top area of the cage so he can get as close as 6-9 inches from the UVB.... He will adjust himself to what he wants. The overall top area of the cage should be around 80 degs. I use a 100 watt blue day bulb for this. His basking spot should be off to 1 corner and in the high 80's to mid 90's.... There again, he can adjust to what he wants. He may stay there for a while or move off once he gets to the temp he likes, they digest food better at warmer temps. He definately needs more freedom of movement... and ability to easily get down to cooler temps or over exposure to the UVB. He should perk up when he doesnt have to fight all that growth.... He needs a machete' or mini chain saw!.....:rolleyes: Dave

    PS..... my new little guy moves around and use's his different lights at different times of day. I have noticed in the late afternoon he will plant himself in the top part of the cage where it is warm.....but out of any direct bulb rays. So warmth & shelter from rays is important
  11. webghost

    webghost New Member

    So I took out quite a bit of the branches/foliage and added additional heat to make sure the top portion of the cage is around the 70's. He is still going to the very bottom. I am clueless at this point. Aren't chameleons supposed to love being up top? Is this something serious?

    1 Hunch (not sure if its true) is he TOTALLY gets freaked out by the MistKing at the top. Perhaps that is what drove him to the bottom? This is just a guess on my part.. If anyone can shed some light on this, I would appreciate it.

  12. lindawaz

    lindawaz New Member

    Basking temps are still too low- needs to be in the 80's.

    Maybe if you warm the top up he will stay there.

    My lily does not like her Mist King either. When it comes on she beelines it to the first leaf that will cover her and act as a roof until it is done
  13. Davonat

    Davonat New Member

  14. burnedrose

    burnedrose New Member

    I'm betting it's the mistking. Kukui RUNS to the bottom of his cage when it goes off and will stay down there until he deems it safe. I've tried moving the nozzles, hand spraying, etc etc, but he is just a scaredy-cham when it comes to the mister. I did find something that seems to work a bit better though - I put the lights on one side of his cage and allllll the nozzles (four of them) on the other side. That way, there is a dryer side to the cage, and the pothos plant is hanging between the two sides, so there is some sort of barrier.

    Now, with jackson's, it's hard to say. I owned a bunch of jackson's in Hawaii and left them on my lanai, so when it rained, they got the water and I did notice they took shelter under the plants when it rained, but not when they were sprayed. I was hand spraying them.
  15. ChameleonNerd

    ChameleonNerd New Member

    maybe not take them out, but definitely cut some of the individual branches off to thin everything out

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