Eating Soil !?

YOSHI

New Member
I no a lot of people cover pots and that to stop there chams eating soil, but what is the down side to this? Surely soil doesnt cause compaction does it? Only my Cham seems to be firing quite a lot at scattered soil on the floor but only when its moist!
 

Silkyslim

New Member
Some soils are full of synthetic fertalizers and chemicals to aid in plant growth that would end up being toxic to a living being small as a chameleon is consistently ingested.
 

Johnny909

New Member
Mine did the same, I covered it cause there was styrofoam in the earth, weird thing is that he stills does down there and looks around for a real long time. It seems that many chams are doing this from all the posts I see. Does anyone know if reptiles use tiny stone to help digest like birds do?
 

brandychams

New Member
i dont know if they need stones or not but my 6 month old veiled goes down and actually fires at the rocks when theres no bugs or water present scared me the other day it was so loud lol
 
If you are using organic soil... it isn't a big deal. if you have chunky dirt and there are sticks, it's a good idea to cover the dirt.

My guys eat dirt.... but it generally happens if I am not feeding them all they can eat buffet style. Some of my guys like to eat plants too. My female veiled was a HUGE plant eater, shed mow down a ficus in a couple of weeks.
 

Dupontman2

New Member
My 2 female vieleds do this too. I put moist playsand in buckets in their cage because they are getting close to the age of maybe laying an infertile clutch. They go down and shoot the sand with their tongue's and do it for quite awhile. I know they are not dehydrated as their urates are good and they get watered regularly. Their stool came out with a bunch of sand! Why do they eat it????
 

jannb

Chameleon Enthusiast
Veileds love to eat everything. I wouldn't allow them to eat too much dirt or sand because it could cause impaction.
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Mine did the same, I covered it cause there was styrofoam in the earth, weird thing is that he stills does down there and looks around for a real long time. It seems that many chams are doing this from all the posts I see. Does anyone know if reptiles use tiny stone to help digest like birds do?
They do not have a proventriculus or ventriculus like birds so no, they do not use rocks the same way.
 

Dupontman2

New Member
Veileds love to eat everything. I wouldn't allow them to eat too much dirt or sand because it could cause impaction.
Yeah, thats why I took the sand out and will wait til they are climbing around the bottom to put it back in. Had veileds before and they didnt do this, but they are all different. Was hoping to put the buckets in there so they would be used to them and know they were there!!
 

ivanho8

New Member
My cham ate the eco earth in the lay box for about 2 weeks like crazy. She went to the lay box first thing in the morning to has her breakfast. But about 1 week ago she just stopped doing that. It's really weird! But of course, it's good that she doens't eat anymore!:D
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
IMHO there's no problem with chameleons eating soil but how do you know the soil you are letting them eat will not cause an impaction? Its too late to find out after it happens. IMHO its also risky not to have a container in the cage so the female can show you when she's ready to lay.

Here's a thread about other critters eating soil (geophagy)....
https://www.chameleonforums.com/geophagy-eating-dirt-46465/
 

jojackson

New Member
Does anyone know if reptiles use tiny stone to help digest like birds do?
well crocs do. :)

How much moisture is your lizard getting? how does it drink?
what are its poo like? Your lizard may simply be making what It can of available moisture?

but how do you know the soil you are letting them eat will not cause an impaction? Its too late to find out after it happens.
Good point. Common sense says, if your lizard has a soil eating habit, you should

A. limit it's consumption by whatever means
B. Ensure the soil is organic (no chemicals/additives fertilisers etc
c. make it as fine as possible and sift out rocky/stick type debris to avoid impaction issues, and preferably avoid sand where possible.

I'ts unavoidable if you use live plants or have a female but same should apply.
:)
 
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YOSHI

New Member
Drinking isnt really an issue, as much as people at the shops state that you rarely see your cham drink, i see my cham drink near enough everyday during misting and thats eitha by firing at the wall or firing at droplets on the plants, as for feaces everythings fine from what i can see, my only downfall is my plants are as bought from B&Q so who no's whats in the soil :( looks like ill have to clear out the scattered soil which i can only assume has come out the bottom of the pot when watering and maybe provide organic soil as mentioned to stop this happening again, cheers again for the info :)
 

jannb

Chameleon Enthusiast
Drinking isnt really an issue, as much as people at the shops state that you rarely see your cham drink, i see my cham drink near enough everyday during misting and thats eitha by firing at the wall or firing at droplets on the plants, as for feaces everythings fine from what i can see, my only downfall is my plants are as bought from B&Q so who no's whats in the soil :( looks like ill have to clear out the scattered soil which i can only assume has come out the bottom of the pot when watering and maybe provide organic soil as mentioned to stop this happening again, cheers again for the info :)
When you first buy your plants you should always wash them and repot them. I also change the first few inches every few months just to keep the soil clean incase poop gets in it coccidia could grow.
 

YOSHI

New Member
Oh Sugar, i'll keep that in mind, theyve been in now for around 3months since i bought them, he's both eaten and drank from his plants and he's still pretty healthy, have i struck lucky? Either way there getting re potted with new soil as soon as i get the opportunity !
 
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