Death due to egg binding


Avid Member
So this will be one of those update stories as it goes.
I had a female veil (2 years old) that was getting ready to lay in her egg bin. She has laid there before and had laid 87 eggs. Then in Nov of 2020 she started her routine and dug a nice nest but did not lay. So by day 4 I was getting worried since she was constantly moving and digging but on day 5 she had passed away before laying. I did remove her eggs JUST INCASE.
Here is current (2/20/2021) picture of eggs (2) that were removed on Dec 1 2020 (48 of them). Crossing fingers for a good ending in a few months (6 to 8 plus or minus).


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Avid Member
She only had 50 eggs inside her this time with about 30 at the tiny developmental stage.
She laid the 87 in July -
From April to Sept. they live outside or if temps get to hot or cold I move them inside with heat and uvb lighting (I am constantly moving cages around). If there is sun for them to get, they are going to get it. That's my job these days. I have citrus trees that I put them in so they can feel free but stay with them. I know they are great escape artists.
More uniformity can be achieved.
I feed differently daily but never held food back (diet) and do not leave a food bin in their cages. I go our and feed 3 times (monitored) daily.
I am extremely aware if their is an issue with behavior or feeding.
There were 2 spots where the eggs were crooked and stuck together inside (figured that is the egg binding)
FYI- I do take them in for wellness checks, even if no problems are observed.. (Oct 2020 was the last one with no issues)
These are mostly observations with no blood work (looking in mouth and bone structure/strength)
That being said, blood work might show issues that I am unaware of.


Chameleon Enthusiast
I'm just telling you this so you will understand what happened to her and so if you get a other female it won't happen to her too.

Having laid the 87 in July, the next clutch should have been laid in November when she was digging again.

Although 50 is better than 87. It's still too many. 24 is a good size IMHO.

The way to prevent large clutches is, as they are approaching sexual maturity, you need to start controlling the diet and temperatures. Basking temperature should be at 80F and she should only be fed 3 or 4 crickets (or equal amount of other insects) 2 or 3 times a week.

You said..."There were 2 spots where the eggs were crooked and stuck together inside (figured that is the egg binding)"...this might be the reason she couldn't lay the eggs in November depending on where they were located inside her....however it might also be the deterioration of the eggs sitting inside her for so long. A vet might know the answer to that. (I'm not a vet but I'm betting on the second option.)

If the vet you took her to knew about the 87 egg clutch and was a good chameleon vet they should have known that she was likely carrying eggs again ....did they mention that? An X-ray might have helped but I'm not sure if bloodwork would have.

Again sorry for your loss.


Avid Member
lol obviously -
I guess my updates are more for the visual aspect of the eggs development, when the majority of chameleon owners would have buried the female instead of making an attempt to salvage what was inside. It actually took almost 2 months before the veins started showing. If this is not interesting then I will stop sharing.

Yeah! Veileds are cool and I have had them since the first ones arrived in the U.S. in the mid 1990's (what I was told back then) not sure of the Canadian history.
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salty dog

Chameleon Enthusiast
I'm not very happy about your lacque of understanding how to care for chameleons and your lacque of empathy...perhaps you should start with breeding rabbits or mice....


Avid Member
I lack neither and have done the mice and rabbits about 40 years ago (actually mice a few years ago for all my snakes). Thanks for the ideas!

Well, I guess it is okay your wrong or misguided in my personality and potential. I learned many years ago not to stoop to others level, and that is okay.
If you knew me personally you might not be so judgmental (I have read some of your other comments in an different forum). Personal attacks don't bother me since I am honest, empathetic, caring, and have my faults too, but don't make others feel bad (unless they misunderstand comments).

Not even sure how you can judge my empathy when I am celebrating life inside the eggs (I know you will hate me having 50 babies and giving them all away not for profit as I have seen how much you make off your panthers).

I worried and was with the female most of the 7 days (I'm retired and do it out of love for the hobby) but this thread was not about a pity party but was suppose to be an educational tool, for those that have a female die and know that life can come from it. Simple! nothing more nothing less.
Soap box time:

I do appreciate all advices, inputs, and also assumptions (you know what they say about that).

Don't worry! I will request this to be deleted in a few days since some people thrive on insulting others.

No worries- any comments after this will not be answered. Big air hug to ya brother or sister- not assuming anything since I don't know ya


Staff member
Just a note egg binding isn't the eggs sticking together. It is a blanket term for when the female does not have the strength of muscle contraction to expel the eggs and the back pressure from the eggs causes additional problems within her body potentially killing her. Overly large clutches and oversized eggs can be a part of this but are not solely the problem. MBD and dehydration can be other factors.


Avid Member
Thanks for all the input (you too Salty Dog) and the help from admin. Just a quick not on husbandry, egg info and other issues that can be found on this great educational site and college report from around the world.

1. It is past experience over the years of trial and error that has allowed us to achieve what nature does automatically. If we were apart of PEDA non of us would have these wonderful creatures.
Salty Dog, I do appreciate your input and will be more empathetic to the cause. Yes, I lost a wonderful female chameleon (which was a new learning experience for me) I don't breed chameleons for profit at all, not even to make-up for what is spent. If you want a few Veileds, I would even split the cost of shipping. That is who I am and have been.

one of my posts got deleted it was.....LOL... HIS SELF PROCLAIMED BREEDING EXPERT.....HIS BREEDING FEMALE DIED....none of my females have ever died this way....
I am an open book- (Soap Box Time)
The reason your post was deleted was not only because of me (since I have empathy and all that goes with it) but someone with authority thought your comment was wrong. Please don't blame them either. I was taught many years ago that even bullies think they are right.

That being said, I don't think your one, just expressed an opinion or observation.

Quote "HIS SELF PROCLAIMED BREEDING EXPERT" I Never proclaimed that- but that is okay. I was just sharing pictures of eggs and their possibility of life. I would be happy if you even accomplished 30% of my life's history. That is not intended to be disrespectful but can be misunderstood to be that. I am happy you have not experienced any issues with your chameleons.

I apologize in advance if you have: Traveled the world, served in a war, adopted hundreds of reptiles only to give them away once they were given a good "clean bill of health". Spend- not even going to mention how much money, care, maintenance, husbandry, books (before internet and even writing to publishers to find how and where to get a copy). living pay check to paycheck and probably less than your income , then BS in Sociology childhood development, and Masters in Education (all while going through back surgeries). See how misleading not knowing a person is. That is about 90% of my achievements (some may say waste of time). Things are easy these days and I am more willing now to learn than in the past because of new information.

Salty Dog you should understand "teaching and old dog new tricks" sometimes it take more effort as things change.
Kind of like you being offended by your deleted post. If others in charge (not me) would have said, "he is right", I would have left it be. The statement was directed towards my empathy, which is not capable of being measured since it is an individual internal component of behavior.

JMO- There are tweaks to all the information we read and nothing is absolute. Example: You can have the perfect humidity and water every eight hours your pet could still become dehydrated via vet check. It is unlikely but it happens.

I don't worry about RI, other infections, mouth sores, dehydration, because with my net work (vets, breeders, wholesalers, zoos, aquariums) and Chameleon Forums. I have learning (many years) how to completely fixed these issues when diagnosed early (and I think I am still young) ha ha.

I don't claim to be an expert either so please don't pass on wrong info (although at the schools I have taught at, the children called me that and I know there was something taught, when they show me pictures of Venus fly traps 7 years after they were given to them, yes I am into plants too - not expert just into) I would say I am passionate to the point of being over expressing myself (soap box stuff).

If we had weeks to read, I would share but we don't.

Thanks to all that are supportive, and even those that disagree- that is where learning takes place. I am sure if I would have titled the pictures " Watch these eggs develop " I might have had a different response. But Death is a trigger for others to chime in which worked just not how I intended.
lol Funny how things work out.
Peace to all - Troy- I was serious about giving you some Veileds if you wanted to experience them too if you have not.


Avid Member
Update! 3/4/2021 Seems there is movement with the embryo (location)
Also- This was the female- look at those nice legs and veil (what a beauty) and no other issues that were known of (maybe over feeding) RIP.
Last pic was a few weeks before she attempted to lay. The male was in his cage about 40ft away but she saw him clearly.


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Avid Member
Simple explanation: Lots of misting and water dripping (both mechanical and physical) with periods of dry heat- to much humidity has cause pneumonia at the wrong temps (learned that many years ago and yes, he survived).

Not so simple or short explanations- hope you have time since learning is important to me especially since I don't get to do all the fun sponsor type stuff we see on TV or read about.

Glad you asked! I read about the actually humidity in their natural habitat in Yemen- broke it down by month. (note: humidity is usually not consistent in the wild and sometime measurements are average and seasonal).

(before actually getting them Veileds years ago- 1995 or so)

I was actually out in that part of the world (and wondered how critters stayed alive such as Camels, spiders (big ones), geckos, snakes, and others that were observed doing other work. Well, it just happens that almost every 24 hours around 2- 3:00am the temp changes creating a down pore of condensation (like a thick cloud everything gets wet, not moist ). Light bulb moment as to how animals survive in (what we think are unlivable conditions). Plenty of H2O just have to get it at the right time and prepare for it. Here in CA I have a misting system, dripping constant most of the day and if temps are to cold, bring everything indoors. I have multiple hydrometers that were used about 10 years ago, both digital and non. When in the egg bin, the sand is very moist so (bad me) never checked humidity in there. The tree in pic is constantly sprayed down with those gallon spray bottles and a regular hose. Spray bottles are treated with declor that is what is used on all the chameleons, toads, frogs and others I have (including spiders when misting).

JMO - Years ago live plants and fine misting were the key for my Bearded leaf's, Jacksons, Fuelleborni, and a few others hardly available anymore for survival (had them over the years few at one time) Parsons were 50 bucks!

I also lived in Hawaii and know how cold the mountains can get and how warm lower elevations are (Jacksons being in both). So, what we read are the best ranges for captivity. There are some pics of Jackson's in the sun letting frost melt. OMG- I can go on about reptiles and amphibians that can almost freeze and come out of it.

Sorry so long but there is more than just reading good ranges on a digital hydrometer.
If you want to know a few other things that worked for me.. Msg me... I know others would shoot me dead.. But I have the proof and that is all I will say.-- Rhino--

I don't socialize often so my stories come out--- could you imagine if I took Zoology, Biology or went a different route in education.
PARENTS!!!!! Support your children in their dreams-- Peace!


Staff member
I was mainly curious about how you keep track of humidity in the egg container....or how you are keeping the eggs.
It doesnt matter one way the other to me how you are keeping them, I'm just curious how they're doing and how they will progress with the setup you compare it to other methods/set ups I have read about.


Staff member
Learning is important to me too. And it doesnt matter if someone likes what you're doing; if you're experimenting with something new, if you're using the tried and true, or going straight "by the book", or even winging it... There's always something that could be learned from every experience.


Avid Member
Opps! I thought you meant everything.

I use a little of all of the above.

The reason this post started with Egg Binding (never diagnosed) was for people that have this opportunity that did not have a vet check (which I did in oct, but it was a wellness for her and Randel (they do minimal testing). Dr. Greek in Anaheim if others are wanting to know who my vet is.

I have used many of the methods online ( fish tank with heater in the 1" depth of water at 77-82 F set and egg tray 8" off water level) many years ago then the closet method (good success with the bearded leafs and sailfins).

Current time

The 66 that hatched were in the garage at temps ranging from 55 at night to 110 during the day- wasn't wanting babies but okay if it happened.

YES! That hot and still had 66 hatch out if I would have been more responsible maybe all would have hatched but I did learn a few other things.

Example: When they start to hatch, only the ones that the egg splits by their heads hatched with no issues. The others split near back end (not sure why) and after a few died (waiting the few days recommended here) I started cutting those ones as soon as the eggs collapse and not wait the recommended few days (the babies were able to survive 4 days with their heads totally out but bodies still protected by egg shell--- they were motionless for a few days and I only new they were alive because of their color and tiny heart beats behind front legs) I'm to weird, I don't care but it is fascinating to me. Still!

They all survived once that was figured out. The rest opening from back side, survived but were and are slow to grow under same conditions (I have 5 going on 3 months that have shed once starting their second shed and other that had shed 4 times (same conditions).

This is why I don't claim to be an EXPERT or doing the right thing all the time. I test what has been taught. If I was in a lab, it would be results and then they would have to be tested over and over to be facts.

Example: These eggs were put in the incubator Dec. 1st. at 29C. Then after 1 month turned incubator off for a few weeks (remember, the eggs were placed just right -accident- for the pictures) and I was not sure they were fertile.

A few weeks before starting to share was the first sign of life. It took almost 2 months before I was sure. I did not see the Male and Female hook up (She was never a Breeder for $$$$) and they did not live in the same cage. I did have them together before, when she did her powder blue spotting thing) and she laid the fertile eggs. I did not want anymore babies (down sizing stuff) It was a weird event that allowed them to be together (unless they are capable of laying multiple clutches with one breeding. Some say "yes", but I have only experienced that with turtles and leopard geckos, not even my Jackson's but I am sure others have.

She was the aggressor and left the tree to his cage, which was open when cleaning his poop (5 minutes) and she was with him. Never actually saw the breeding happening (but again not sure), i did remove her from his cage. She was in her power blue spot phase, not like in the picture taken a few weeks later (my assumption was-- if she was already gravid she would never have had 1. blue spots or 2. gone to his cage unless to fight but would have been showing her Black Beauty colors).

This was also a reason I was sharing, the unforeseen possibility.

This works great! I don't check humidity (per equipment wise) and keep an eye (not and expert) on the egg development and size. I know to much water will cause them to burst and not enough is bad too .

I just tuned into the Chameleon Academy (five minutes ago) today and will learn some fine tuning stuff and probably most of my bad habits. Then I think! They learned why can't I.. Selfish I know

Sorry! Can't give you a better way than that.


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