Hi All - Newbie


New Member
Hi Everyone,

I'm glad that a friend recommended this forum.
I've been wanting a chameleon since a was a small boy. I've never had the chance and the wealth of information that is now available on this forum. I'm going to read up before getting one of these babies. Can anyone suggest what species i should start with? I've head several people say Veiled are probably the easiest to start with.

Hi Peter, nice to have you join us. A veiled is a good choice as far a it is easier, but I don't think any chameleon is easy for a new person. But we are all here to get you and your soon to be chameleon both healthy and happy.:)

Tell us what you know as far as what you need for a set up and we will fill in the blanks.:D
Welcome to the world of chameleons!

Here's some information to get you started.......
Exposure to proper UVB, appropriate temperatures, supplements, a supply of well-fed/gutloaded insects, water and an appropriate cage set-up are all important for the well-being of your chameleon.

Appropriate cage temperatures aid in digestion and thus play a part indirectly in nutrient absorption.

Exposure to UVB from either direct sunlight or a proper UVB light allows the chameleon to produce D3 so that it can use the calcium in its system to make/keep the bones strong and be used in other systems in the chameleon as well. The UVB should not pass through glass or plastic no matter whether its from the sun or the UVB light. The most often recommended UVB light is the long linear fluorescent Repti-sun 5.0 tube light. Some of the compacts, spirals and tube lights have caused health issues, but so far there have been no bad reports against this one.

Since many of the feeder insects have a poor ratio of calcium to phosphorus in them, its important to dust the insects just before you feed them to the chameleon at most feedings with a phos.-free calcium powder to help make up for it. (I use Rep-cal phosphorus-free calcium).

If you also dust twice a month with a phos.-free calcium/D3 powder it will ensure that your chameleon gets some D3 without overdoing it. It leaves the chameleon to produce the rest of what it needs through its exposure to the UVB light. D3 from supplements can build up in the system but D3 produced from exposure to UVB shouldn't as long as the chameleon can move in and out of it. (I use Rep-cal phos.-free calcium/D3).

Dusting twice a month as well with a vitamin powder that contains a beta carotene (prOformed) source of vitamin A will ensure that the chameleon gets some vitamins without the danger of overdosing the vitamin A. PrEformed sources of vitamin A can build up in the system and may prevent the D3 from doing its job and push the chameleon towards MBD. However, there is controversy as to whether all/any chameleons can convert the beta carotene and so some people give some prEformed vitamin A once in a while. (I use herptivite.)

Gutloading/feeding the insects well helps to provide what the chameleon needs. I gutload crickets, roaches, locusts, superworms, etc. with an assortment of greens (dandelions, kale, collards, endive, escarole, mustard greens, etc.) and veggies (carrots, squash, sweet potato, sweet red pepper, zucchini, etc.)

Calcium, phos., D3 and vitamin A are important players in bone health and other systems in the chameleon (muscles, etc.) and they need to be in balance. When trying to balance them, you need to look at the supplements, what you feed the insects and what you feed the chameleon.

Here are some good sites for you to read...
I have read up on the basics:
-Mesh cage (thinking of 18x18x30) to start with, (Brand?)
-climbing twigs /vines/fake plants
-some real plants to help with humidity.
-drip system for drinking
-basking light (incandescent bulb)
-UVB bulb
-male or female?
- the hardest part is where to find/purchase a healthy specimen.

Thank you for the wealth of info you just provided.
Just to throw my two cents in :) I would go for a male veiled. Male cause I like their coloration in all species and not havin to deal with eggs Veiled cause of ease of care. it was the type i first started with and still love her the most to this day :) As for where to get one.. the sponsors from this site are a great place to start :) I think most of the sponsors are participating forum members too

Hope it helps a lil bit
Welcome! I would also suggest a Veiled. Looks like you're in good hands with the info kinyonga and Laurie's provided. And it's very true, all chameleons are hard to care for, but as long as you have the forums I'm sure you'll do well.
Welcome to the forums :)

if you are willing to pay the extra cash, a male panther chameleon should be just fine nearly similar care as a veiled, maybe higher humidity but not really. Or even a jacksons chameleon. whatever cham that interstes you an read really well about you can start with. Though the beginner species are mostly known for veields, panthers, an jacksons.
What temp. are they comfortable at? My house is like 67degrees at night time during the winter. Will i need to keep a heater of some sort?

also looking to get a baby first, so should i the small cage?
What temp. are they comfortable at? My house is like 67degrees at night time during the winter. Will i need to keep a heater of some sort?

also looking to get a baby first, so should i the small cage?

that night temp is fine:), actually panthers, veileds, and jacksons are fine in the 60s range at nite, you dont need a heater.

ypu can get a baby and it woud be easier to get a small cage, what i did is got the large cage and divided it to make it smaller an then removed the divider when my cham was ol enough to use the whole large cage
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