Breeding brevicaudatus rieppeleon chameleons and incubation questions

AnnaBabyxox

New Member
Hi! I'm Anna and I'm new to the forum. I wanted to get into chameleons as I've been looking for a harder reptile to step up to and fell in love with the pygmies. <3 Anyway, I tried looking most of the info I needed up but still have a couple of questions.

Firstly, I'm unsure as to how to set up an incubator. I understand that the temperature should be in the early to mid seventies at all times and to use vermaculite but what about humidity?

Also, I found out how many eggs are generally in a clutch and how long it can take for them to hatch but I want to know how long the mother carries the eggs and how many times a year I can expect clutches.

I plan to buy captive bred babies from flchams hopefully within a year, one male and two females. I want to be confidant I know how to do everything correctly before I take on the lives of tiny chameleons. ^_^

Also, is there any husbandry issues people usually mess up on? I know all about the importance of UVB/UVA, plan to keep the heat in the mid seventies and the humidity aaround 70%. I also planned to buy the small kit from fl chams which is 16x16x30 and comes with:
-60 Watt Heat Bulb
-5 1/2" Clamp Lamp
-20" Fluorescent Fixture
-Reptisun 5.0 18" Fluorescent Bulb
-Exo Terra Vine – Medium
-Exo Terra Large Ampallo Plastic Leaves
-Zoo Med Calcium w/ D3
-Reptivite
-Zoo Med Digital Thermometer
-Reptile Spray Bottle

Is there anything else that I might need that doesn't come in this kit? I also wanted to buy two one for the adults and one for the babies once they're hatched, will this kit work for babies too?

And finally where is the best place to advertise babies? I already know a locally owned pet store will buy from me but I was wondering if there were any online places I should advertise where people would be knowledgeable and not just buy my babies on a whim, is there a place like that?
 

brandychams

New Member
as far as an incubator i always just use a dark closet at room temp if i remove them from site
the perlite should form a ball when squeezed but not drip water
they carry anywhere from 60 to 90 days
i didnt see calcium without d3 on your list
and am unsure on the cages for babies i use large cricket keepers or a five gl aquarium so they can get food easy
pygs are awesome and i hope u enjot your new clan:)
 

AnnaBabyxox

New Member
Thank you for responding! Why is calcium necessary to give to the chams when they're recieving uva/uvb rays? I'm not arguing, undoubtedly you know more than me, just wondering about it. Thank you again for your helpful response.

Could you expand on the incubator a little more please? I'm not sure how to make one. I've seen sterilite bins being used, are they appropriate? And what about humidity?
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Welcome to the forums! The UVB does not create calcium, it causes reptiles to make Vitamin D3 which is necessary to absorb calcium from the food they eat. So the calcium still has to come from somewhere. The light is needed to allow them to use the calcium from their food because otherwise it is just eliminated in the feces with other waste components.

Although if you want to get really technical...it's not truly known whether or not pygmy chams utilize UVB at all. As a general rule it's still recommended to use UVB in case there is benefit like in most other chams, but it may not be 100% necessary. That's why we tend to give them used 5.0 or new 2.0 bulbs so the concentration isn't overwhelming to a species that may not even need it. Just fyi. :)

You picked a good little species to work with, I love my pygs!
 

AnnaBabyxox

New Member
Thank you for responding! ANd thank you for telling me how the uva uvb lights work, I have a much better understanding now. I will add the calcium powder to my list.
 

brandychams

New Member
for the incubator use a tupperware type container a few inches deep pirce a few holes around the side for circulation and add your moist but not too wet perlite then lay eggs on top u can cover with spragum moss to help retain humidity
 

AnnaBabyxox

New Member
Thank you for explaining the incubator set up. Can I ask why the incubators need to be in the dark? Would the babies be killed if they were to be raised in light?
 

brandychams

New Member
usually they bury them they wouldnt get light naturally maybe someone else can chime in with the exact reasoning behind it
 

brandychams

New Member
i use a used 5.0 and have never had any problems i use the heat because my house is cold and like i said they seem to hover around it:D
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Why shouldn't I use a screen cage for pygmy chameleons? Like, what damage does it do? Thank you for the help.
I don't think it will do any damage, it just may make it harder to keep the humidity up as high as they like it. Glass makes it much, much easier to maintain humidity around 70%. Also if you want to feed any very small feeders they may escape through the screen.
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
I understand now. How do I figure out how big the holes in the screen is on an flchams chameleon habitat?
The screen used is the same size as window screen so you can just look at your own windows. It's definitely big enough for fruit flies to escape from, and maybe crickets depending on how small the crickets you want to use are. Pinheads up to 1/8" (I think) can squeeze through. I know a lot of people have had success with medium sized fish tanks looking terrariums. I have mine in a vertical exo terra tank personally and I like the way they're set up. But pygmies at least offer more flexibility in housing than some of their bigger cousins!
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Ventilation is not as much of a concern with these little guys as the bigger chams. I know the horizontal tanks I've seen used are big enough that there's enough ventilation for them. They're not huge tanks, just larger than 20 gallons or so. Since they're horizontal it's easier for air to move in and out from the top. And the exo terras have a small ventilation strip under the doors so air can circulates in through the bottom and out through the top since it's vertical. I had to glue mesh over it though because the little crickets were escaping through it, but it's just mesh so air still circulates pretty well. And people generally plant the bottoms so the live plants help with air exchange as well.
 
Top Bottom