Hello! I am a new chameleon keeper looking for advise on what I could be doing better for my chameleon. She is recently grown very restless and is climbing the walls often and as soon as I open her enclosure she scrambles to me to get out of her enclosure. My second concern is that she has been developing black spots on her face and body. I am seeing an exotic vet with chameleon care experience but am also wondering if this may be a husbandry problem, and what I need to change/adjust so she can thrive and live the longest life possible. I also would appreciate if someone could give me advice on if I am providing the best UVB lighting for her or if I need to get a second bulb due to the size of her enclosure.
Current Problem - Black spots, restlessness
- Your Chameleon - Veiled chameleon, female, not sure on age, my vet put Feb as her estimated DOB. I purchased her from a pet store May 20th (I now know to purchase from a reputable breeder)
- Handling - Upon getting her we would handle her a few times a week, however now that she is restless every time I open her enclosure she is climbing on my hand trying to get out. I know to handle them as little as possible and would like to get her to the point where whatever is bothering her is fixed so handling is what is recommended.
- Feeding - crickets, Dubai roaches, mealworms, wax worms, horned worms and I have super worms coming in the mail. I currently feed her 5 small bugs in the morning and evening. I am open to hearing feedback on if this is too much. I know when she is older the amount and frequency will decrease. All bugs are gutloaded for at least 48 hours before feeding, they are given a wide range of vegetables and occasionally dusted with calcium and a multi vitamin
- Supplements - Repti-Calcuim without vitamin D3 daily light dusting in the morning daily, Reptivite Reptile vitamins without D3 two times a week, Rep-Cal phosphorus-free calcium with vitamin D3 two times a month.
- Watering - Before I knew what was recommended for watering, I used a green fountain type thing that had water dropping over plastic leaves, I am now adjusting to a diy drip bottle over leaves several times a day to hopefully adjust how she drinis water. I would eventually like to get rid of the fountain knowing it is not recommended. The water used is R.O. filtered water for both.
- Fecal Description - She tested positive for pinworms and she took medication to get rid of those, her last dose was this last Friday. I will take her back in a few weeks to test again to ensure she is still parasite free. Her most recent fecal seemed normal.
- History - She does not seem to have a fear of humans. I believe she is getting ready to lay her first eggs, her little belly has recently gotten a little round and I believe she is about at that age.
- Cage Type - Screen cage with a plastic shower curtain wrapped around 3 sides to help maintain humidity (I live in a dry area). Exo-Terra 36” x 18” x 36” on top of a walmart cube shelf that is currently laying horizontally
- Lighting - HO t5 uvb lighting combo kit, 575x58x42 Mm, the heat lamp is a small circle one that was given to me, the lightbulb is a GE crystal clear energy efficient incandescent general purpose halogen bulb that uses 72 w (the box says it replaces the 100w bulb). Schedule, UVB on from 7 am to 7 pm, heat light on from 7 am to 12 pm, and if I notice her hanging out in her basking area I turn it on again for a little.
- Temperature - Average temp in the enclosure during the day is mid 70’s to high 70’s, basking spot temp is usually in The mid 80s, lowest temp at night is around 70-72. Temps are measured by two thermometers in the enclosure, one by the basing spot and another at the bottom of the enclosure.
- Humidity - Daytime humidity I am currently working on lowering, today it was 70%, at night it is around 80%. My goal is to adjust the wrap around the screen enclosure to help the humidity levels lower during the day to what I understand is recommended at 40%. Humidity is measured by a humidity/temp gage in the enclosure.
- Plants - I learned recently that fake plants are not recommended and am working on changing out fake plants with live plants, current live plants are a money tree, two pothos plants, a fern and an elephant tree (?)
- Placement - Enclosure is located in my daughters room, recently moved away from an air vent, however their is a ceiling fan that will be visible no matter where the enclosure is placed in the room. Low traffic area, her room is usually only used for getting ready for the day, sleeping at night and grabbing an item she wants in her room, play room is downstairs and friends are all aware of the space the chameleon requires so it does not get stressed. The height of the cage from the floor is about 5 ft 6 inches.
- Location - Utah
Current Problem - Black spots, restlessness