ignoring nesting site


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My 6 month female veiled is showing signs of being gravid. She paces the bottom of the enclosure, eats less, and looks like she is about to explode. I can also see some egg indentations around her pelvic area. I put in a nesting site for her and followed the article from chameleonnews. But it's been two days and she takes no intrest in it. Right now it is filled with super soil. Should I switch to sand or just mix sand into the top of the soil? There are a couple of branches leading to the soil and there is plenty of foliage hiding the site from nosey people. I was thinking of pinning up a bed sheet to further block any visual contact from her and me since the cage is in my room. I figure she might be shy still. Does that sound like a good idea? I also took out all her live plants so that there is only one soil for her to concentrate on. This is my first cham. Females are so picky!:confused:
How long was she exploring the bottom of the cage before you put the egglaying container in for her?

You said you took out all of her plants....she may be upset at the changes to her cage. Personally, I would have left them in. The important thing is to get her to lay the eggs....it doesn't really matter where she lays them IMHO. I would rather see her lay them anywhere than become eggbound.

If the sheet will prevent her from seeing anyone watching her while she is digging, then I would put it up. When she is digging, if she sees someone watching her she will likely abandon the hole. If she does it often enough, it can lead to eggbinding. Chameleons may dig more than one hole looking for a suitable site...this is normal....but they should settle on one hole and lay the eggs there.

I hope to hear that she is digging soon!
Not really sure about female chams but i know that i had the same problems with my female waterdragon i had to close off the cage from anything looking into it
I solved the problem with my water dragons by using two washbasins (hope you know what they are)...one sitting upside right....the second one, I cut a hole in the side of it so she could get inside and then inverted it over the other one. Keeps the male from seeing the female laying the eggs...so he won't eat the eggs either. It also keeps the sand from getting spread all over the cage while she is digging too.

I have covered a chameleon egglaying site with a "tent" of paper towels supported by branches from time to time too when I had a very stubborn/picky chameleon!
thanks for the idea had her for about 2yrs now and she still likes to lay them when no one is watching makes it hard when you have kids that like looking,playing with the dragons etc but i'll give that a try
So today I put in a clear plastic recangular tupperware bin that is about 6 inches high. I filled it with play sand and mixed it up with some potting soil. I also put back the plant. But she still kind of ignores the sand!! I don't know what to do. She is killing me.:confused: I watched her for a good three hours and nearly fell asleep. First she went into the sand to check it out and started a little dig in the corner. Then she went back up to bask and started ignoring the sand. She would go back down to the bottom of the cage near the sides of the bin constantly. Over the three hours I saw her repeat this pattern: bask for a couple of minutes, go back down to the ground. She did this at least five times. I was afraid she would get stuck in a corner so I shoved a big peice of foam in the gaps to block her off from the ground. Hopefully she'll bring her attention back to the sand. I know she is gravid because she is huge and all poka dotted.
I just checked on her again, right after I wrote my last post. She was in the same hole as before and looked like she was digging. She just stared at me and stopped. I forgot to block off a visual barrier at that spot. So I cut up an old bed sheet and covered that part of the cage up. One question though. She looked like she was stuck in the corner hole. How much time should I give her before I try and help her out?
i used something like a plastic trashcan for my veileds ,i used peat n sand mixed she dug down about 2ft. what i do is put her in before her light goes off n leave her alone all night and all the next afternoon ,then right before the light goes off the next day i check her and bring her out and put her back in her cage n give her water a.s.a.p.

then the next morning i give her a mist shower n run her dripper all day and mist and water the rest of the veileds .

it works out to her being alone for about 22 hours.

the only issue i have now is i think maybe i need a different egg laying medium because i think the peat/sand is getting in the females eyes since 2 of my females have eye issues from time to time and the males eyes have no issues at all .

i put her in the egg chamber when she starts digging in the smaller container thats in her cage.
Is the eggs chamber outside of the cage? Also do you mist or feed her anytime when she is digging her holes? Are there any lights set up? Maybe I'll try this if she doesn't finish her holes in the sand box I got in the cage. I might give it a try on friday.
I have a small container of sand in each egglaying female's cage. When she starts digging in that I move her to a 65 liter rubbermaid container. I cut away most of the lid and put screen over it. I fill the container about half full of moist washed sandbox sand and add a branch. You can add a plant too...but make sure that if its in a pot the pot sits on the floor of the rubbermaid container so she can't dig under it and have it collapse on her. I put the female in and put the lid on and place a light over the screened part. Be aware that the container will heat up more than a cage since its closed on all sides...and don't use too big of a light. You can water and feed her while she is in there...just make sure that you remove any uneaten insects so they won't chew on her or the eggs.

DO NOT let her see you when she is digging....it will make her stop. If she stops often enough she will get past the point of being able to lay the eggs and become eggbound!
How long does it take for them to lay their eggs? I was planning on setting this up in the morning. Then go to school all day. If I do this I'll leave at 3:00 pm and won't be home until 12:00 am because I have night class. Is that enough time?
It can vary. Some of them dig for several days before they are satisfied with the hole. They will dig for a while and return to the branches and then dig again the next day. Most of the veileds and panthers I've had will lay their eggs at night. Once they stay with their bum down in the hole, they are laying their eggs. It will often take several hours to lay the eggs although some finish quicker/slower than others. I let her bury them and pack the sand down and return to the branches before I dig them up.
I fill it about half full...so it would be over 10 inches.

I leave the female in there until she lays her eggs usually. There have been exceptions....some species of chameleon are stubborn about laying their eggs...and believe it or not some prefer a small area to lay their eggs in.
I fill it about half full...so it would be over 10 inches.

believe it or not some prefer a small area to lay their eggs in.

:eek: I hope this isn't the case with her. Just to make matter worse. She stressed me out big time. I just hope to solve this first nesting issue and hope that the future ones will go smoother.
I haven't found veileds to be as picky as some. Deremensis are terrible!

Funny...but after years of keeping/hatching/raising chameleons, the egg laying still doesn't seem easy to me! I'm always glad/relieved when the female is finished!

Hope yours will be done soon!
I thought my cham was ready to lay some eggs today, since she already started digging a hole in the small sandbox in her cage yesterday. So Today I put her in the nesting bin that I provided her with. I made it just like the one described earlier in the thread. There is moist sand filled up halfway and I even put a plant in there. There is also a basking branch and a basking light on one end. I left her alone all day except for feeding and watering time. But all she did was hang upside down from the screen and walk all over the cage. It was really hard to transport her to the nesting site this morning. She was the grumpiest that I've ever seen her. When I came home from night school to check on her, she was asleep and there were no signs of her even being on the floor. I have no idea what is going on and this whole nesting thing is frustrating me. Trust me, I am really trying here. But I think I'm gonna flip out. :eek: I'll probably leave her in the nesting site until friday evening. If she doesn't dig any holes by then, I'll put her back in the cage where she is comfortable. How does that sound?
Sometimes when you move them to the bigger bin, it takes a while for them to settle in. I would leave her there a couple of days at least and then see what happens.

Sometimes the most important thing is to leave them alone to do the job....while keeping an eye on them without them knowing.

She can get to the floor, can't she??
Yes, she has easy access to the floor. I also put up a bunch of sheets around her to curtain her off from anybody accidentally walking in on her. She has lights and everything. I know she was really stressed today while I put her in there. But hopefully she will feel better tommorow. I'll keep her there for the weekend instead of just friday.
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