jacksons chameleons

jim734123

New Member
i just bought a male and female jacksons chameleon from a reptile show. the guy said they can be housed together. i have a small rainforest exo terra set up. is it fine to house them together?
 

jdog1027

Established Member
If it is the same one I'm looking at, I would think you need more ventelation. Screen cage man.
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Welcome to the forums!

That cage is WAY too small unless they are hatchlings and you should not house them together at all actually. Chameleons are easily stressed by just seeing each other so you should always keep them individually with visual barriers if there are others in the same room. You need a screen cage for both of them at least 18x18x36" big! Hang on, I'll go dig up some more resources for you to look at. Did the guy you bought them from tell you anything about UVB lighting or gutloading?
 

jim734123

New Member
i have a uvb light for them and a blue light for the heat source. i thought they were best to keep along but the guy said they are fine in pairs. prob just wanted me to but 2. maybe i will build a cage here this weekend for them. really wanted to use this darn cage i just bought though. it was like $100. i guess i should have went w the senegal chameleons. they were much cheaper.
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Yeah he was probably just trying to make a bigger sale. Although even the sengals need a bigger cage than that. Really the only chams you can keep in a cage that small are pygmies. There are some really nice cages that people on here have built, sometimes much cheaper than buying one that big. I built my first one but bought my others from diycages.com. If you want to build one I'd search on the forums so see what others have done. You might be able to sell the exo terra on craiglist or something.
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Jacksons really are nice little chams! Do you know how old yours are?

Although this blog is about keeping a veiled chameleon it is a great start to learning about chams in general. There are some differences between jacksons in temperature and humidity but feeding, lighting, gutloading, watering concepts etc. are the same. The link in my signature is excellent for gutloading information on fruits and veggies.

For adult Jacksons the humidity should be 50-80% and ambient cage temperature should be 68-80 degrees F humidity with a basking spot around 85. This is an excellent article on the care of Jacksons.

There are many good resources available and lots of people with a lot of experience with this species on the forums so if you have questions feel free to ask. :)
 

jim734123

New Member
they seem to be about full grown. they are wild caught and the dealer indicated that the female is pregant. i guess i bought two bc of his recomendation and wanting to try to bread them. i am going to maybe get another cage. i am going to see what the pet stores in my area offer.
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Yes jacksons do have live birth rather than laying eggs. That last link I posted has some general care info on neonates. First things first though, especially if they're wc, you need to make sure the female get approriate water, lighting, food, and supplementation so she can make strong babies and keep herself strong. She'll need a 5.0 linear UVB light asap, her feeders should be dusted lightly with calcium only (no D3) at least every other feeding and her feeders should be well gutloaded to ensure she's getting the vitamins and nutrients she needs. WC specimens can have a difficult time adjusting to captivity sometimes as it's very stressful so try to handle them as little as possible and get them in the appriate cages quickly. They also tend to get dehydrated because they're not used to water in other forms than rain. I've never had any cham babies or gravid chams myself so that's about as much as I can offer in that regard. Hope that helps!
 

stevie

New Member
they are indeed livebearing
@ferretinmyshoes i keep al my jacks thogether its a gentel species so you have to see for yourself look



they are happy no?

i just put them in sepperate cage's when she's pregnant
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
You must have a densely planted cage, I've heard that if they can hide from each other it might work, but not always. Regardless, if the female is pregnant as he was told then he should keep them separately, as per your recommendation. ;)
 

stevie

New Member
Yes jacksons do have live birth rather than laying eggs. That last link I posted has some general care info on neonates. First things first though, especially if they're wc, you need to make sure the female get approriate water, lighting, food, and supplementation so she can make strong babies and keep herself strong. She'll need a 5.0 linear UVB light asap, her feeders should be dusted lightly with calcium only (no D3) at least every other feeding and her feeders should be well gutloaded to ensure she's getting the vitamins and nutrients she needs. WC specimens can have a difficult time adjusting to captivity sometimes as it's very stressful so try to handle them as little as possible and get them in the appriate cages quickly. They also tend to get dehydrated because they're not used to water in other forms than rain. I've never had any cham babies or gravid chams myself so that's about as much as I can offer in that regard. Hope that helps!
why no d3 ????
if they are kept indoors they need it to , only when you can put them outside the sun whil do the rest
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
why no d3 ????
if they are kept indoors they need it to , only when you can put them outside the sun whil do the rest
I meant that if you're dusting with calcium at least every other feeding you should not be giving D3 that often because that would be too much D3. I give D3 to mine twice a month. I'm just trying to get him started right now, he can refine his dusting schedule once he gets them settled in. Do you have a care sheet or general pointers you can add instead of nitpicking things I've said? He's starting from scratch so could use some more info.
 

RAFASTAR23

New Member
HELLO THERE!
yes this species gives birth to live young. --for the size you mentioned, they may not be full grown. Regardless, you really need to separate them, and put them in their own screen cage. specially if the female is gravid (pregnant). I would hate for you to loose them both because of the wrong information you got from the seller. Set up a screen cage of about 18"x18"x36" for each, well furnished to help maintain humidity above 65. you need to mist them about 3 times a day. they drink only water that is dripping from the wet leaves, almost never from a water dish. propper Lightning is very important too. they regulate their body temperature and absorb uva/uvb rays for "photosynthesis" of vitamin D3 (vital for their development). ---
--RAFASTAR23.
 

jim734123

New Member
just went and bought new screen cage. it is 2ft 2ft by 3 ft. much larger enclosure. i am now going to the store to get some live plants and then i will switch them over to the larger cage in a hour or so. thanks for the pointers. i should have never listened to the dealer. he was just trying to get a buck out of me.
 

jim734123

New Member
yeah first chameleons. i have had geckos and anoles before when i was younger. and i bought few geckos the other day when i bought the ex tera tank. couldnt find any non-toxic live plants in my area at any of the store. (lowes, HD, meijer, walmart) ect. so i just grabbed a few sticks from behind my house and put those in there for now. so i put the fake plants on top of the branches so they had a leaf to drink off of. they are eating quite well already. hopefully that is a good sign. what do you guys do for heating them at night? my room stays around 67 degrees. should that be ok?
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
You picked a good species to start with, my little jackson 'Buster' is super cute. Welcome to the addiction :)

They will be fine at night unless it gets below 60 regularly. And if that happens use either a space heater or a ceramic heat bulb because chams won't sleep if there is any light in the room at night, even the dim night lights.

Using fake plants is fine, just wash them with soap and water well to get rid of chemicals that may be on them. The best non-toxic plants to use are scheffelera arbicola, hibiscus, and pothos plants. The first and last are usually really easy to find but maybe you'll have to wait until spring for the stores to have them. The hibiscus is the hardest to keep alive indoors and the scheffelera can get waterlogged although it's great for dense leaf cover.

Glad to hear they're eating well, hopefully you've got a nice healthy pair! Although you can never be sure with some of the wc chams. Might be a good idea to get a fecal done on both of them when you get a chance - they often have intestinal parasites that can be a problem down the road.
 
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