Housing

Bowmancj85

Member
About to purchase a new complete cage setup for my chams. Im going with dragonstrand cages and understand fully grown male panthers need 2x2x4. I like the look of the breeder cage much more and was curious if a 21.5x16x44 would be feasible for a full grown male panther or if i should just stick to a 23.5x23x48 keeper series and cover the walls for humidity purposes. Thank for all info...
 
Honestly I'm curious to see how the experienced people here answer this. I have sort of wondered myself, as I have seen so many on here say they have the large breeder series. But then I also see people on here ripping others for not having at least a 2x2x4 cage.
 

KaijuVeiled

New Member
I'm my opinion for a full grown panther, I would go with the safe and less stressful route and go with a 24x24x48. If you buy a 24x24x48, it should be the only enclosure you should need for the panther cham! If you buy anything smaller it can cause unnecessary stress on the chameleon and can ultimately shorten it's life span, that's a bit extreme but, enclosure size DOES matter! In my opinion you should go with the 24x24x48 size enclosure! Hope this helps!:D
 

camimom

New Member
You can go with the slightly smaller cage if you need to.

A cage that tiny bit smaller will NOT stress your cham out, or shorten his life span.

While Bigger is ideally always better, you need to worry more about height than width.

I recommend using the bigger cage, as some males are known for roaming all over their 'territory' but the slightly smaller cage should work just fine. Though I would think about how you will set things up, seeing as you have less space for lights on top, as well as plants.

Just a thought.
 

Bowmancj85

Member
Yea I've though about it to. I'm just going with the larger cage and Gonna cover the 3 sides when I attach everything to keep the water outside the cage to a minimum if none. Thanks for the input. I just like those breeder series much better and he has a free range he is on a lot of the time also so I wouldn't think a little but smaller of a cage would be much difference.
 

jajeanpierre

Chameleon Enthusiast
Yea I've though about it to. I'm just going with the larger cage and Gonna cover the 3 sides when I attach everything to keep the water outside the cage to a minimum if none. Thanks for the input. I just like those breeder series much better and he has a free range he is on a lot of the time also so I wouldn't think a little but smaller of a cage would be much difference.
I've wrestled with that as well. I have both cages and am in the process of switching everything over to the DragonStrand cages.

Currently I have a sub adult (50g) wild caught quad male in the DragonStrand large breeder cage. He has not had any issues dealing with being caged.

My captive-bred veiled male, on the other hand, stomps around and acts like his 24 x 24 x 48 Reptibreeze is much too small. His cage is not as densely planted simply because I don't want the water splashing out onto my hardwood floors. I'm not happy with his set up and will be glad when my new (DragonStrand) cages arrive next week.

I think a lot has to do with how cages are furnished.

The DragonStrand has sides and ledges built into the cage, they can be planted heavily all the way up the sides to the top. There is no problem with water dripping out. There can be with the screen cages, even when things are done to wrap the cage up.

Screen cages also have the downside of tending to rip out toe nails.

You can modify a screen cage, which is what I am doing, but it will end up costing me more than if I had bought the DragonStrand cage to begin with. DragonStrand now have ledges designed for screen cages you can buy. You can add coroplast sides on the inside before you screw the screen cages together. None of those options are really cheap. My $90 or $100 Reptibreeze will have more money put in for coroplast and ledges than the difference in the cost between the breeder cage and the Reptibreeze.

I'm hoping DragonStrand will offer a new size of breeder cage that is double the width. I'm toying with the idea of bolting two large ones together--or two medium ones together to have a laying box under one and a floor with drainage under the other so the laying box doesn't get saturated from misting.

Chameleon housing is a work in progress that's for sure. My Reptibreezes will just end up going on my deck as outdoor cages, so they aren't wasted.
 

Bowmancj85

Member
Yes that's exactly was my plan with coroplast between pieces before assembly but that is another 80 on top then add ledges. I'm going with the breeder series. Much nicer and should suit him well enough.
 

fluxlizard

New Member
The 24x24x48 size is only a size someone thought up - it is not the word of God written in stone. You can easily fudge a few inches on some of the dimensions- personally I am not a huge fan of 4' high cages for panthers as I feel the bottom 12" is kind of a waste of space that tends to be rarely if ever used. And meanwhile if you want something a little roomy which seems to be the point, another foot length going side to side would provide more usable space for the lizard to stretch out full length and actually go somewhere rather than that extra foot height. For height, I prefer to put the whole cage up off the ground on a table or shelf.

I hesitate to mention the size glass tanks I kept my breeders in the early 1990s in because I do not want to set an example of conditions which I now consider cramped, but it is safe to say it was significantly smaller and the animals were very healthy and long lived. They weren't particularly active in those tanks, but they appeared content and healthy and had good coloration and appetite and bred well. The tanks were kept on shelves so the chameleons felt they were up off the ground. My view has changed since that time- it is more interesting to watch the chameleons and surely more interesting for the poor chameleons who will spend their life in these enclosures to see them doing what they do in large enclosures. They are more active in larger enclosures too.

An extreme example- in Ferguson's book on panther chameleons he mentions dimensions the size of 10 gallon fish tanks being suitable as minimal setups for adults! Mine were kept in tanks that were more roomy than this, but I did know someone who kept females in that size tank with home-made "tank toppers" to double the height back in the early 90s.

My point- panthers are very hardy and the real question is what do you feel is best for your lizard and your situation. the 24x24x48 is just someone's else's thought on the answer to that question- it isn't a hard rule that will prevent failure or ensure success. It just gives a bit of room for exercise, enough for a thermal gradient, and the height plays into the idea that the lizard's are arboreal and like to be up off the ground.
 
I love the dragon strand cages. With that said, I think they are the top of the line in chameleon cages and also the most expensive. I actually went to buy two large breeder series and two drain trays a week ago. Got them in my cart and proceeded to check out. 185 per cage, 28 per tray. Came to about 213 per cage which is high but I thought these cages are indeed worth that. But just then, my shipping was added on and shipping alone was near $200. Bringing the total for each cage around $300. I couldn't do it. If I was just getting one or two cages I might consider it. But I'm going to end up needing 4. So now I'm going the diy route. I've made a few cages in the past and this sort of project intrigues me and you can make everything exactly how you want it. So now it's just finding the time .
 

Bowmancj85

Member
Yea I'm going with the breeder series and the substrate bin to easily empty water. I will keep this post updated with everything.
 
The 24x24x48 size is only a size someone thought up - it is not the word of God written in stone. You can easily fudge a few inches on some of the dimensions- personally I am not a huge fan of 4' high cages for panthers as I feel the bottom 12" is kind of a waste of space that tends to be rarely if ever used. And meanwhile if you want something a little roomy which seems to be the point, another foot length going side to side would provide more usable space for the lizard to stretch out full length and actually go somewhere rather than that extra foot height. For height, I prefer to put the whole cage up off the ground on a table or shelf.

I hesitate to mention the size glass tanks I kept my breeders in the early 1990s in because I do not want to set an example of conditions which I now consider cramped, but it is safe to say it was significantly smaller and the animals were very healthy and long lived. They weren't particularly active in those tanks, but they appeared content and healthy and had good coloration and appetite and bred well. The tanks were kept on shelves so the chameleons felt they were up off the ground. My view has changed since that time- it is more interesting to watch the chameleons and surely more interesting for the poor chameleons who will spend their life in these enclosures to see them doing what they do in large enclosures. They are more active in larger enclosures too.

An extreme example- in Ferguson's book on panther chameleons he mentions dimensions the size of 10 gallon fish tanks being suitable as minimal setups for adults! Mine were kept in tanks that were more roomy than this, but I did know someone who kept females in that size tank with home-made "tank toppers" to double the height back in the early 90s.

My point- panthers are very hardy and the real question is what do you feel is best for your lizard and your situation. the 24x24x48 is just someone's else's thought on the answer to that question- it isn't a hard rule that will prevent failure or ensure success. It just gives a bit of room for exercise, enough for a thermal gradient, and the height plays into the idea that the lizard's are arboreal and like to be up off the ground.
For the record.

I fully agree 100% with this.
 

Bowmancj85

Member
Looking for light hood suggestions on running a t5 repti sun linear bulb. What's the consensus. Wanna do this right the first time around. I also have a 50-60-75 heat bulbs to get everything where needed on a separate done lamp. Thanks.
 

Bowmancj85

Member
He's using it. Missing all the time. And not fully extending. Maybe 3 inches when he does. Still chases crickets down.
 

Bowmancj85

Member
Finally started building the set up. The zip ties are temporary until I can get the correct epoxy to hold everything together and let it dry. Still have a few larger branches to place. Currently have a pothos that will ole fully grow quickly and fill out a lot of the extra space. Until then it will be that and a bunch of fake vines for hiding.

 

nick barta

Chameleon Enthusiast
Site Sponsor
I bought a 4 block of the breeder series from Bill, and I have never seen a screen cage fit so well, it is impressive.:D

CHEERS!

Nick
 

nick barta

Chameleon Enthusiast
Site Sponsor
I love the dragon strand cages. With that said, I think they are the top of the line in chameleon cages and also the most expensive. I actually went to buy two large breeder series and two drain trays a week ago. Got them in my cart and proceeded to check out. 185 per cage, 28 per tray. Came to about 213 per cage which is high but I thought these cages are indeed worth that. But just then, my shipping was added on and shipping alone was near $200. Bringing the total for each cage around $300. I couldn't do it. If I was just getting one or two cages I might consider it. But I'm going to end up needing 4. So now I'm going the diy route. I've made a few cages in the past and this sort of project intrigues me and you can make everything exactly how you want it. So now it's just finding the time .
Shipping can be less; talk to Bill. It is very difficult for website shipping to work accurately. Bill is a fair vendor, the cages are worth the cost IMHO.

CHEERS!

Nick:D
 

Bowmancj85

Member
Yea these cages are very nice and a quality product. Still bare up top but being finished within the next day. He would usually be a darker color constantly and now he's just always bright.


 
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