im new with a few big questions.

scshark

New Member
i would like to than this community first for everything i have read the last 3 weeks prior to becoming a member. it has helped me a ton. but as the title says their is some info im lacking and would like people to chime in on and possibly fill newer members such as myself get a grasp on the whole cameleon pet process and the right way.. it may help the older/vets as refreshing the beginer things tends to make the tech stuff much better.

ill try and brake it down.. in smaller groups of questions.

1: cost of ownership:

to properly care for and maintenance a healthy and happy home for the pet... i understand the food to a degree.. roughly how much does it cost to properly feed,the powder chemicles+the treats they may enjoy.. how long do the supplementary powders last(calcium ect ect) is their a vendor that offers a cameleon diet regament. as in weekly or bi weekly food shipments.

2: general housing...-lighting/uv
yes i know proper lighting and heating/maintance temps is key. variances in the temps is a must have day cycles ect ect..
i seen everyone recomens the zoomed uv bulbs that need to be changed 5/6 months.. do people also use the ceramic heat lams or just the hood style lamps? does anyone offer a timer or timing system to switch from day to night cycle for the lighting system.

3: water/misting
seems like the automated systems are the new gen high tec stuff.. i also see most of the ultimate starter kits come with a misting system(awsome) how expandable are these systems. i also have seen that buying a baby requires a smaller cage which is included.. i have also seen the bigger setups going for 80-100$ which is doable. when upgrading at the 8-10month point to the bigger cage is their a transition period or do you just move them in.? do you recomend moving the plants from the smaller cage tot he larger. when going larger what else should be included? more heating elements,lights,plants,vines if so what is the general price point on the transition?

i ask these questions because i have wanted a panther for a long time and well it seemed keeping them 10yrs ago was much more of an art than science(thx internet) and i was not risking a animals life to captivate them. this is also the reason i am asking the questions if i do get my cameleon i want to be fully prepared and ready and able to give it all it needs.. i am moving into an appartment and dont allow dogs/cats which is fine so this is the perfect time for me to do my setup(in my mind)

i am looking forward to reading responses and filling in the blanks.. i also hope these questions help other people looking into the hobby..

many of you have amazing setups and pictures i am very jealous and hope to join the group and be a happy owner soon.
 

Picasso123

New Member
I'm new too but I'll share what I've found out so far:

1) I'd say $40 a month which isnt that much. The powders take awhile to go though a whole jar, and if you take him/her into the sunlight once a week you don't need the d3 powder.

Almost any pet store can get you crickets and you can order other live foods from a variety of online stores though I haven't seen automated orders yet.

2) Cost doesnt seem that high either less your on and allowance. For $200 you get pretty much everything you'd need. Then your cost will go up as you upgrade to better equipment and fancier "toys"

3) In they go. However you have to do all the unpacking and packing.
 

Picasso123

New Member
4) 10yrs ago they didn't have the color "scheme" now I bet. I'm having a hard time settling on a breeder!!!
 

scshark

New Member
with the food question it wa more because i see you need to spread their diet out with worms,crickets,flies ect ect.. even if it is not free roam food they need variety.. i had had also herd of gutloading their food( i assume that means feed the food fruits before for nutritional purposes)

i would only be able to do the outside stuff spring/summer so id rather have the d3bulb than to not.. they seem to be 50bux shipped.

i am sure the "toys" can get pricey i am more intrested in the genral quality parts mistking/timers to do it right and grow into it..

im still in the air about real plants and fake... so many choices:( can you have both?
 

scshark

New Member
4) 10yrs ago they didn't have the color "scheme" now I bet. I'm having a hard time settling on a breeder!!!

no they didn't have the variety of colors and variations of the morph's and general specialty species as readily available.. but when you seen an adult in its colors it was inspiring...

i came from pythons and i can say till last 5/7 yrs their was not anywhere near the amount of species and hyper colors,pastells,superbees,albion's i think maybe a handfull existed in the states.. now they are readily avaliable pricey but no where near what they use to be... you still have toy 8-10k snake but you can get a designer one for 500-1000 and have a exotic designer pet.

hear is just a handfull of the morphs a vendor on hear offers.
http://www.reptmart.com/c-48-specialty-ball-pythons.aspx


but i am really after:

Ambilobe Panther Chameleons
Nosy Be
jackson
 

Texas Panther Man

New Member
Unless your keeping the chameleon outside on a regular basis. More than 3 hrs per day I would still give my chameleon calcium powder with d3 at least 1x a month.

As for plants: real plants are the only way to go. Do you see silk or plastic plants in nature. Its better for the animals mental and physical well being. Real plants help maintain humidity in the enclosure also. Its much easier to clean real plants as opposed to silk or plastic. As long as you use a cham safe plant no worries about ingestion with a real plant either. (with all those points I see no argument for plastic other than your lazy and taking short cuts) If you cant keep plants alive you cant keep a cham alive.
 

Ekproject

New Member
ok..for starters i cant comment on food because i have 3 chameleons..so im not sure what it costs to feed one..sry im not much help there..if you want to save money buy a big enclosure to start and just block half of it off..if it is a longer cage make it smaller..if it is a taller cage make the floor higher to make it shorter..also the fake plamts u get at the pet store u can get same thing at the dollar store..u dont need any heat sources at night...just ur uv light and basking light in the day time. you can buy a simple timer at a wal mart for those.
 

Picasso123

New Member
In the winter you probably need the d3 powder, but I don't think they have d3 powder in the jungle :D and he would much rather have real sunlight then anything outta a bulb anyways.
 

panthercham

New Member
Welcome to the forum :)

One cost that is not mentioned is having a few hundred dollars put away for vet/emergency bills.

Many new owners don't know about that until its too late and then there are so many threads on here looking for help and not being able to go to the vet as they cant afford it.

You can have a mix of fake and real plants. Real plants help keep humidity up and you can find a list of safe cham plants under resources on here.

As for gutloading your feeders I use carrots, Kale, Apples, Yams, spirulina, Dandelion Greens. Sandrachameleon has a great blog on gutloading and all the different nutritional value of fruit and veg....I put the link below for you :)

https://www.chameleonforums.com/blogs/sandrachameleon/
 

Texas Panther Man

New Member
In the winter you probably need the d3 powder, but I don't think they have d3 powder in the jungle :D and he would much rather have real sunlight then anything outta a bulb anyways.
How long exactly have you kept a cham? Because I have over 10 yrs exp and I breed chameleons. You need to stop giving information without knowing what your talking about.:rolleyes:
 

Texas Panther Man

New Member
To the op Im sorry to hijack your thread. But if a person is giving incorect uneducated information to new keepers I will call that person out. Not to be a jerk but because that info could cause harm to another keepers chameleon. ;)
 

scshark

New Member
its form life im not mad.. everyone has their ideas.. right or wrong..

i just started it becasue i want the info so i can make a dedicated decission on purchase i would have any type of light needed just to have it as a backup reguardless.. the worst thing is to need and not have than to have and not need.

im kinda getting to where id like to start collecting the various "toys" in anticipation so i have everything. maybe even buy the starter kit and plant it get the misting/lights,vines up and running smoothly

i am on drag racing forums you guys are a cake walk...

but in the end its all about the health/well being of the creature. if i cant care for it the right way i dont feel the need to own it for it to suffer.

im thinking month or so till im moved in and settled
 

Texas Panther Man

New Member
Its just aggravating when someone starts posting advice on subjects they have prob read over one time and gotten them confused. There are literally hundreds of different aspects of chameleon husbandry. Ive been reading care sheets and articles since 1996 on chams and Ive kept them off and on since then. Im still learning new things all the time. So for someone to post advice or give opinions on husbandry with no real exp or understanding is negligent in my opinion. Off the soapbox now. Good luck with your chameleon Sc you will find its an addicting hobby.
 

donnak0125

New Member
How long exactly have you kept a cham? Because I have over 10 yrs exp and I breed chameleons. You need to stop giving information without knowing what your talking about.:rolleyes:

If a cham gets say...6 hours of outdoor sunlight on a warm sunny day, should I still keep his/her uvb light on when I put him back inside his/her indoor enclosure (example 4pm) until it's the usual lights-out time (example 7pm)?
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
When you are putting the chameleon outside are you providing shade so the chameleon is not "forced" into 6 hours of sunlight? I have a large outdoor cage and I live in florida. I have my chameleon outside sometimes 6 hours or more but for much of that time he is in the shade and that is by his choice. As long as you provide him a way in and out of the uvb as he would have in nature, then he is fine going back in the light and it will be his choice if he wants to go under the light or not.
 

Carlton

Chameleon Enthusiast
i would only be able to do the outside stuff spring/summer so id rather have the d3bulb than to not.. they seem to be 50bux shipped.
im still in the air about real plants and fake... so many choices:( can you have both?
Just get used to those expensive UV lights...there are only 1-2 decent choices and you must use them unless your cham can live outdoors year round. I like using double fluorescent fixtures on my cages because I can get a bit more use out of the bulbs. There is usually a combination of a "new" UV tube and a "used" one all the time. Just rotate them every 6 months. The used ones can be useful to light up shady parts of a large cage, for live plants, or general lighting even after the UVB has dropped off.

Sure, you can use both live and fake plants. Live plants have a lot of benefits, humidity buffering, air quality, physical well being, attractive, etc. You can use fake plants to fill out a cage's decor if you want...as long as your cham doesn't decide to eat them.
 

jojackson

New Member
Though I do Use Artificial UV and dust with calcium and D3, I personally consider it all suppliment to a well gutloaded variety of diet and as much natural Uv as possible, which is my animals' primary source.
However, Not everybody has the time avail, or the climate suited to maintaining natural UV as their primary source year round.
Perhaps this is what the poster intended TexasPantherMan? :)
 

donnak0125

New Member
When you are putting the chameleon outside are you providing shade so the chameleon is not "forced" into 6 hours of sunlight? I have a large outdoor cage and I live in florida. I have my chameleon outside sometimes 6 hours or more but for much of that time he is in the shade and that is by his choice. As long as you provide him a way in and out of the uvb as he would have in nature, then he is fine going back in the light and it will be his choice if he wants to go under the light or not.
I leave him a place to get out of the uvb whether he's indoors or outside so he has the option for shade. I just didn't know if sunlight is stronger (more powerful uvb:confused:) and if there are unsafe limits. There are up to ~7 months of mildly warm/hot weather here. During that weather he'll be spending a max of 6 hours at a stretch outside unless it's just too hot even in the shade. So, it sounds like it's safe, as long as he can get out of it when he wants.
Thanks!
 

Elizadolots

New Member
Schark, you don't absolutely need a misting system. Some very successful keepers do it all by hand. If you don't think the cost of such a system is a problem, then I think you can afford a chameleon. Start with what you need (which means: a spray bottle not a mist system) and see how it goes.

You should buy all the supplements just to have them in case it turns out your goal of 6 hours of sun a day can't be achieved (cold storm, unplanned overtime at work...whatever).

I agree you should have a couple of hundred set aside for possible medical needs. If you don't, in fact, have credit then you'll need that as cash on hand.

I think $40/month is way more than you'll need to spend. Once you get everything set up it's mostly about the feeders and maybe water (if you can't use your tap water).

Something that can help with the feeders: find feeder buddies. Check with your friends and neighbors. You'll probably be surprised at how many have reptiles. Arrange to split online shipments. Online you need to buy pretty big volume, but if you get to split it among 3 or 4 people, it becomes much cheaper than going to the pet store.
 
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