Hungry or Just Bored


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Do chameleons eat until they are full or do they eat because they see prey? We just want to make sure that he eats enough and that we don't over-feed him. Our 3 month old veiled chameleon eats between 13-18 crickets a day. Is that okay or a little to excessive? We put them in a dish at the bottom of the cage for him to come down and eat. Crickets are in any range from small to medium size. We also fed him by hand mealworms and waxworms once or twice a week. thanks
My 4 month old panther stops when he's full...or so it seems. He usually downs 13-18 small crickets, a few silkworms, and an occasional waxworm. I also got some phoenix worms today and was thrilled when he snatched one up instantly! So far he hasn't turned down any foods that i've offered...but always seems to lose interest and climb away from me when he's full.
Remember that reptiles use fat stores for reproduction, and so the availability of food is a key stimulus for reproduction.
Female chameleons that are allowed to eat as much as they want are far more likely to produce clutches of eggs without being mated, and will produce larger clutches of eggs/offspring. This is not ideal (even to breeders), since more frequent clutches of eggs/offspring will generally shorten the life of the female, and larger clutches will generally result in a higher proportion of non-viable eggs (smaller clutches are usually healthier).

I also think that if you feed males a lot when they are younger, they will invariably go through phases of 'hunger-strikes' or 'fussy eating' when they are older, as they begin to become more efficient at thermoregulation and so will need less food to fulfil their heat and energy requirements.

Reptiles kept in captivity can become obese (usually in adults), so it is important to monitor and restrict their food intake.
Remember, Veiled Chameleon sometimes do over eat. Remember to suppliment all its food intake or else it might develope MBD. Limit the food intake so that it can build its bone structure at an acceptable time. When, they take too much food and developed too fast, its bone structure might not be well developed and become brittle.
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