Custom enclosure and conditions

Wizard

New Member
Hello everybody and Happy New Year! I wish you all the best, and to find the strength to do whatever it takes to fullfill your dreams :D

Now, I need your help and experience in order to create a new setup for a Veiled Chameleon. Unfortunately here in Greece we have very few shops with such knowledge and it is difficult to speak with someone really professional. So, to the point. I am building a custom cage for the housing. After lots of reading I came to this:

58x55x170cm vertical setup. The bottom 70cm is made up from plexi glass, and the 20cm of them are going to be filled with dirt in order to put real plants* in it. The rest 100cm will be from metal/plastic mesh in order to have adequate airflow. So, I need your help to keep it humid and warm for the Chameleon.

Conditions in the room are already measured during a whole year:
Humidity: 10-60%
Temp: 18-32°C.
Those numbers represent the absolute min/max and not the usual conditions.

I (think I) need heating lamp, UV lamp(s), temperature controller, humidity controller, a spray/mist system.

Could you please provide me with some information on what I need for this setup and if possible with links from products in order to review them later?
Do you believe I will be needing anything else?

*For the plants now, I had find a list of compatible plants, but I cannot find it again. Could you please provide me of some links to find the plants I need or can you suggest some? I am thinking of placing 2-3 on the ground, a tall one in the middle and another one like ivy to "fill the gaps". :rolleyes:
 

laurie

Retired Moderator
Hello and welcome to the forum. Lets see if I can help.

This is a link to the safe plant list. It is at the top of the health forum but this is easy. I use Ficus, umbrella, pothos, and hibiscus .
https://www.chameleonforums.com/live-plant-database-2632/

Your cage is a bit different that most I see. The height is excellent, but a bit larger length and width is what I am familiar with. To maintain humidity cover 2 sides with plastic ( like a shower curtain) it will help hold the humidity but the live plants will help so you may not have a problem.

Are you getting an adult chameleon? Your temperature would be too hot for a baby.

Last you need a UVB not just a UV. I will direct you to a location to look at supplies.

http://lllreptile.com/

This is a plan sponsor who will have almost every thing you need.

Except for supplements of calcium (no d3), calcium +d3, and multivitamin (herpavite), you listed pretty much everything you will need.

If you are planting the plants in the cage be sure to cover the soil with rocks larger that the chameleon can get in his mouth so there is no chance of inaction from eating dirt.

Let me know if I can help with anything else and post a picture of your cage.
 

Wizard

New Member
Hello laurie, thank you for your response :)
This is a link to the safe plant list. It is at the top of the health forum but this is easy. I use Ficus, umbrella, pothos, and hibiscus .
Yes, I read this link minutes after I wrote this post, however my question is not just about safe plants, but more about what you prefer to use from your experience, and I believe i got it!

Your cage is a bit different that most I see. The height is excellent, but a bit larger length and width is what I am familiar with. To maintain humidity cover 2 sides with plastic ( like a shower curtain) it will help hold the humidity but the live plants will help so you may not have a problem.
Yes, I know it is a little bit narrow, that it why I made it tall enough. Unfortunately, in our current house there is no more space in the winter. This fits just right where it is going to be placed. As for the humidity, I will have to check it in the first days, and if I see low levels, I will close both sides.

Are you getting an adult chameleon? Your temperature would be too hot for a baby.
I really don't know. Right now I am building the cage, that is why I am looking for info on what I must include. I am going to get one male in a month or so. As for the temp, in the winter it tops 24°C during the day, so I do not think is high, right?

Last you need a UVB not just a UV. I will direct you to a location to look at supplies.

http://lllreptile.com/

This is a plan sponsor who will have almost every thing you need.

Except for supplements of calcium (no d3), calcium +d3, and multivitamin (herpavite), you listed pretty much everything you will need.
Thanx for the link, however I do know many shops, and we do have here, but they are not sure what to give you. I came to the conclusion on what supplies I will need, after lots of reading. However what I did not understand is what exactly. For example, what type of UVB? There are numerous types. Also, what heating lamp? Since the height is 1.70cm, would be enough a 300W? Do I need a better one? Should I put two?

If you are planting the plants in the cage be sure to cover the soil with rocks larger that the chameleon can get in his mouth so there is no chance of inaction from eating dirt.
I did not know that... So I must fill the ground with rocks? I thought of that, just for the shake of looks, not for the protection of the animal...

...post a picture of your cage.
I am planning to post a work log :rolleyes:
 

Itwas

New Member
Hello laurie, thank you for your response :)

Thanx for the link, however I do know many shops, and we do have here, but they are not sure what to give you. I came to the conclusion on what supplies I will need, after lots of reading. However what I did not understand is what exactly. For example, what type of UVB? There are numerous types. Also, what heating lamp? Since the height is 1.70cm, would be enough a 300W? Do I need a better one? Should I put two?
Are you sure they are UVB? I didnt realise they made them that powerful? 300w would be way too powerful, the one I use is only 15w. I also use only a 40w household bulb for basking temps and I live in the UK which is a lot colder than Greece.

This is the type of UVB bulb you want and they range from 14w to around 60w.
 

Wizard

New Member
Are you sure they are UVB? I didnt realise they made them that powerful? 300w would be way too powerful
300W was referred to the basking lamp, not the UVB :)
So, what would you prefer? One Zoo Med ReptiSun 5.0 UVB 24in (18W), one Zoo Med ReptiSun 5.0 UVB 18in (15W), or two Zoo Med ReptiSun 5.0 UVB 15in (14W) ?

I also use only a 40w household bulb for basking temps and I live in the UK which is a lot colder than Greece.
Is 40W enough? I thought I was in the need of 300w or so... :confused:
Now, that I saw my options, I see there are those:
Zoo Med Repti-Halogen Reptile Spot Heat Lamp 50W, up to 150W. I would prefer to put two of them, to have better lighting and redundancy, in case one is burnt while I am away. Would you say that 2x75W is enough?

You search something like this ?
No, I do not search, I am building one :D
 

Texas Panther Man

New Member
For lighting I would purchase a double fluorescent fixture. Use one uvb bulb (ie reptisun 5.0) and in the other slot I use a 6500k plant grow light fluorescent tube. That gives the cham his uvb and also gives the plants some beneficial lighting and helps give the cage better lighting overall. My plants do quite well under this type of lights and actually show growth without having to rotate them outdoors like i did yrs ago.

As far as basking lights. Most of us in the US use regular old household incandescent bulbs. I use 60 watt bulbs for 8 months of the yr during the coldest winter months I will up the males basking bulbs to 100 watt. I keep my females at 60 watt yr round. Just get a digital hygrometer/thermometer with a cord for testing basking branch temps. You want his temps at his basking site to be around 85-90 degrees fahrenheit. Sorry I dont do celsius.
Those are adult temps you'd want them a cpl of degrees cooler for babies.
 

Itwas

New Member
Is 40W enough? I thought I was in the need of 300w or so... :confused:
Now, that I saw my options, I see there are those:
Zoo Med Repti-Halogen Reptile Spot Heat Lamp 50W, up to 150W. I would prefer to put two of them, to have better lighting and redundancy, in case one is burnt while I am away. Would you say that 2x75W is enough?


looking at what temperatures you say you have there then you may not even need a basking bulb but when it comes to basking lights it doesnt really matter what wattage bulb you use, whats important is the temperature is correct. So if 2x 75w bulbs give you the right temps at the basking area and ambient temps are fine then that will work. if they are too hot you can either move them further away or buy lower wattage ones. if you are getting a young veiled then you only need the highest tempts around 26 - 28C.

you also dont need to spend extra on branded reptile bulbs, regular household ones are fine.
 

junglejoe

New Member
hello and welcome to the forums.. greece... i want to move in..lol... just a little help i suggest not putting dirt in the bottom of your cage.. it is a breeding ground for bacteris.. its harder to clean your chams fecies and all your chams food fecies.. also the dirt will help with humidity.. but will aslo create mold... witch is also not good..a live plant in a nice pot will subdue perfect.... good luck.. and i hope i helped even just a little..
 
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