Fighting low humidity again! Please help!

Lindasjackson

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have all three sides of my enclosure covered but I can’t get my humidity out of the 30s during the day. I have my mistking going off every 3 hours and a fogger going at night and the humidity is around 69 when the mister is misting. Afterwards humidity goes down again. This is my first winter with my Jackson’s Cham and this just started happening in the last couple weeks. If I cover the door in plastic as well its Ok as long as I don’t cover the lower service door correct? I’m about to do that but just wanted to be sure. Do I have to put a fan on top?
 

nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
you need to make a chimney. So at minimum you need part of the bottom and part of the top open.

You can also still play with your mistking. The rule of thumb is drying out inbetween mists. So it might be 1 minute an hour vs your every 3 hour.

But honestly 30 during the day and maintaining 70 overnight is not a bad compromise.

If you over do it, you end up with URI anyway, from mold/protein growth in the cage from medium humidity and not enough air flow.

It doesnt have to be "spring" all year long in chameleon land...
 

Lindasjackson

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thank you! I appreciate your advice however Jackson’s require very high night time humidity, like 80-100%. And 50-60% during the day. I do have the top of the enclosure open, it’s screened as I have a reptibreeze cage. I covered it on 3 sides with shower curtain and just now covered the door in plastic as well. I left the service door at the bottom open and the top open. That should give me the chimney effect, correct? My worry is if I need a fan on top to draw the air up and out and if so will it lower the humidity by doing that?
 

dinomom

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thank you! I appreciate your advice however Jackson’s require very high night time humidity, like 80-100%. And 50-60% during the day. I do have the top of the enclosure open, it’s screened as I have a reptibreeze cage. I covered it on 3 sides with shower curtain and just now covered the door in plastic as well. I left the service door at the bottom open and the top open. That should give me the chimney effect, correct? My worry is if I need a fan on top to draw the air up and out and if so will it lower the humidity by doing that?
The fan will definitely remove the humid air and continuously draw in dry air so that is not needed.

What is the humidity in your house? It would have to be significantly lower than 30% in order for enclosure to be 30% with plants/spraying. If so it is not particularly good for you either. If you have a basking light on more than a couple of hours I would personally get rid of that for the rest of the day. Jackson does not need it after that and it may be drying out the air.

Sounds like you need a good whole house humidifier.

Currently where I live the humidity is 12% outside, without a whole house humidifier the humans not to mention the animals would be sick.

I use a Dyson but there are cheaper alternatives. If you get your house up to 40-45% I bet your problem will be resolved.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Get the duct window film... THis has double sided tape that you put on all sides of the frame then lay the film to it. Use a blow dryer to tighten the film. This will give you a tight seal really locking in all humidity. You can do the door in it as well but you need a PC fan on the top pulling Air up and out of the cage to help with the air flow creating a chimney effect. Very important when you have all sides and the door covered. Otherwise you get stagnant air. So service door still screen and screen on top pc fan on top. It is not a strong fan just enough to make the air move.
 
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Mendez

Chameleon Enthusiast
30% humidity during the day is perfectly fine for a jackson's chameleon. I wouldn't go any lower though. If you want to bring up the humidity, you could always switch over to a bioactive setup or add more plants to the cage. The substrate will help keep in the humidity.

But yes, the window film will also help. I've used it without a fan, but it also depends on the heat output of your lights. If your lights hardly put out any heat, you can always supplement with a computer fan on a timer. Leaving the computer fan on all day will negate your efforts at achieving high humidity.

Another option is adding more house plants to the overall room. The more moist soil in the room, the greater the humidity becomes. Just don't buy plants that naturally dehumidify.
 

Lindasjackson

Chameleon Enthusiast
Well I have the whole cage covered in plastic except the top and service door. My fogger comes on at midnight and runs til 5am. Currently the humidity is 50% with all the lights off. I hope the fogger and mistking will bring the humidity up tonight. I’m not adding a computer fan just yet but if I have to I do have one. Maybe I’ll be able to find the window kit tomorrow. You think it’s better than the shower curtain that I’ve cut and taped to fit securely around the cage?
 

Mendez

Chameleon Enthusiast
I'd use the window kit just for the front main door as it will be more transparent than clear shower curtain. However, if you are fine with the look of shower curtain on the front main door, go for it. It will do the job just the same. However, since the front ,ain door is on a hinge, using the film with the double-sided tape will give off a cleaner appearance and be easier to attach in my opinion.
 

PlanetRemulak

Avid Member
Hey Linda, I’ve actually been having the same problem with humidity that you are.

My cham’s humidity requirements are the same as Eustis’s. I’ve been keeping my basking bulb on all day, with the exception of it going off for a half hour for a mid-day misting. This is what has been causing levels at the very top of the cage to plummet to 33-30% (sometimes even 29% 😕). I’ve been keeping it on so that he has ample opportunity to get warmed up, should he feel like it. When the basking bulb is off, I have 0 issues getting RH to 50%. The problem with this is that ambient temps at the top get down to 67-66 F, which my cham seems cold at (he’ll flash darker colors and try basking under the plant light for a while instead 🙄). Since the weather has been cold, I’ve dealt with low day time humidity. I‘ve been concerned that maybe my cham can’t properly shed because of it, and that may be the case (guess I won’t know until I change up the basking light schedule and let him sit in that 50% for a while). His colors have been dull and muted, but his urates look normal and RH levels are always pretty high at night (85% or over). I showed recent pics to the breeder I got him from, and they seemed to feel pretty confident that what he is experiencing is winter funk.

I use window shrink film on all sides of my Reptibreeze but the front and service doors (I had actually bought sheets of coroplast to use instead, but I still haven’t gotten around to putting them up as the shrink film is actually pretty effective). I think you also going this route should work pretty well for you. You can try covering the left, right and back sides with shrink film like @Beman suggested, leaving it off the front door. Try that first and see where that gets you as far as humidity levels go. I’ll also second @dinomom ’s suggestion to leave the basking bulb off for the rest of the day (after Eustis has warmed up). Being a montane species, I think he can definitely handle cooler ambient temps. :)

Just going off of what I have experienced so far - it would seem as though hydration during drier months shouldn’t be too much of an issue so long as you are able to consistently get humidity up pretty high at night. You said your cage has been sitting at about 70% while Eustis sleeps, which is decent. Fogging should also help, especially after you get that shrink film on. I’m sure you’re already doing that when temps allow, though. @dinomom already mentioned a room humidifier (cool mist), which you might consider getting as well 🙂 I definitely intend to get one! 30% humidity isn’t that great for us, either. Anything lower than that and you’ll start having to deal with things like nosebleeds.. These dry winters are rough lol
 
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Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
Well I have the whole cage covered in plastic except the top and service door. My fogger comes on at midnight and runs til 5am. Currently the humidity is 50% with all the lights off. I hope the fogger and mistking will bring the humidity up tonight. I’m not adding a computer fan just yet but if I have to I do have one. Maybe I’ll be able to find the window kit tomorrow. You think it’s better than the shower curtain that I’ve cut and taped to fit securely around the cage?
The main advantage to window insulation kits is that when applied according to directions (double-stick tape and shrink with a heat gun) it's virtually invisible. If your shower curtain is fastened securely around all the edges, functionality should be the same for shower curtain or window insulation.

I would not use a muffing (computer) fan unless absolutely necessary. It only takes a very small Δt to generate a natural stack effect.

Also remember that RH inside the foliage canopy will be up to 10% higher than outside the canopy due to transpiration.
 

Lindasjackson

Chameleon Enthusiast
thanks for the advice both Planet Remulak and Klyde O Scope! My humidity probes are deep n the foliage so that’s my actual humidity. Last night when the mister went off the humidity would get up in the 90s but would go back to 70s when off. I’m not sure how it did when the fogger was on because I was asleep but I will check my phone later. Right now I’m getting ready for a blizzard tomorrow. Talk to you all later.
 

BryanP

Avid Member
I've said this in other threads but the reality of the universal adoption and recommendation of screen cages for this hobby should be rethought and swapped in favor of hybrid enclosures.

Right now my Relative humidity has been single digits outside in Southern California (non costal) for a week now. I have a hybrid enclosure with a screen top and a 6in screen section on the lower 25% of the cage and the rest is plexy and PVC (think zen habits style) and my humidity is stable in the 50-60 range.

ANYWAYS how are you measuring humidity? I use a govee monitor and it's great, digital, and accurate.

If you have a reptibreeze I would recommend covering the door with window film or replacing it with plexy.

You most likely won't need fans as the heat from the basking bulb will cause convection enough.
 
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dinomom

Chameleon Enthusiast
I've said this in other threads but the reality of the universal adoption and recommendation of screen cages for this hobby should be rethought and swapped in favor of hybrid enclosures.

Right now my Relative humidity has been single digits outside in Southern California (non costal) for a week now. I have a hybrid enclosure with a screen top and a 6in screen section on the lower 25% of the cage and the rest is plexy and PVC (think zen habits style) and my humidity is stable in the 50-60 range.

ANYWAYS how are you measuring humidity? I use a govee monitor and it's great, digital, and accurate.

If you have a reptibreeze I would recommend covering the door with window film or replacing it with plexy.

You most likely won't need fans as the heat from the basking bulb will cause convection enough.
Feeling your pain with SoCal Santa Ana's! Cham does not understand why he cannot go outside.
 

PlanetRemulak

Avid Member
thanks for the advice both Planet Remulak and Klyde O Scope! My humidity probes are deep n the foliage so that’s my actual humidity. Last night when the mister went off the humidity would get up in the 90s but would go back to 70s when off. I’m not sure how it did when the fogger was on because I was asleep but I will check my phone later. Right now I’m getting ready for a blizzard tomorrow. Talk to you all later.
Looks like I lied.. I just saw a split in Beau’s skin. He’s definitely working on a shed (and it’s about TIME). So I’ll use that to reiterate: keep your RH levels up as high as possible at night, which you are already doing! It ensures hydration and helps offset drier periods during day time hours :)

Keep warm and stay safe during the blizzard!

I've said this in other threads but the reality of the universal adoption and recommendation of screen cages for this hobby should be rethought and swapped in favor of hybrid enclosures.

Right now my Relative humidity has been single digits outside in Southern California (non costal) for a week now. I have a hybrid enclosure with a screen top and a 6in screen section on the lower 25% of the cage and the rest is plexy and PVC (think zen habits style) and my humidity is stable in the 50-60 range.

ANYWAYS how are you measuring humidity? I use a govee monitor and it's great, digital, and accurate.

If you have a reptibreeze I would recommend covering the door with window film or replacing it with plexy.

You most likely won't need fans as the heat from the basking bulb will cause convection enough.
100%. Could not agree more. I tend to think that full screen cages are really only feasible if you live in an area with naturally high humidity, and/or you use it as an outdoor cage. Can I ask which Govee model you use? I need new hygro/temp probes and have been wanting to make the switch to Govee.
 

Lindasjackson

Chameleon Enthusiast
I love that I can look back at the humidity levels of the night before to see how they were. Looks like after covering the door with plastic and leaving the service door uncovered my humidity was in the ninety’s all night as long as the fogger was on. Big improvement!
 

ItsMike64

Established Member
I’m just going to insert myself in here because I’m kinda curious - what is this chimney effect and how is it useful in maintaining humidity/temperatures? Can someone explain what exactly it does?
 
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