Just a Theory

kongchi

New Member
I remember when my chameleon was younger, he liked to climb to the bottom of his plan and eat anything white or bright off the soil. Though I covered it up with a net, he would still go down and try so. The other day I took all the cham plants out to water and sun but I left one outside and this morning I found snail caviar in the soil, lots. Do you think that is what they think that is? Could it be that chameleon's ate snail eggs in their native habitat?

 

jannb

Chameleon Enthusiast
I would recommend covering the tops of your plants with LARGE river rocks and not having anything in the bottom of the enclosure. Your cham could become impacted.
 

ferretinmyshoes

Veterinarian
Staff member
Those look like pearlite balls or some other soil fertilizer substance to me. Snail eggs are usually totally round, not jagged and angular in my experience. Also depending on the age of your cham, it seems that if these were there when he was younger they should have either hatched or dissolved by now if they were eggs. I don't think chameleons really have a sense of smell that would detect them anyway. And as far as I know they don't go to the ground to eat anything in the soil, just bugs they can zap with their tongues. I could be wrong, but regardless they should not be eating soil for the reason jann said. Interesting thought though.
 

Monzon

Established Member
That is interesting to me. I agree that some chameleons seem overly interested in perlite. Did you offer up the snail caviar? I think that this is where some field observations would be helpful. I have seen Jackson's eat resting/dormant snails so it would seem that "food" images can extend beyond twitching and scurrying insects. Thanks for sharing that!

This could get expensive:
http://www.caviarexpress.com/snail-caviar-50?category_id=74
 

richpass6

New Member
i would actually notice the same thing in my panther. he would do it as a juvenile, i think mostly out of curiosity. interesting though, i actually caught him in the act once and he ingested one of those round things. i doubt it could be harmful but i would cover the bottom so he doesn't eat pick up anything that could injure him
 

Monzon

Established Member
The perlite can definitely be harmful. As a new material, it is inert and non-toxic, but it can cause impaction if it is big/irregular enough. The timed release fertilizer pearls are a big no-no also (organic potting soil will generally not have additives). This thread has gotten me thinking about other small, white, ovoid food possibilities..... Eggs of other reptiles (geckos come to mind)? Eggs of insects?
 

Hoj

Friendly Grasshopper
i have always wondered the same thing, thought they were looking for some type of larve or sumthing.
 

kongchi

New Member
It's definately not perlite. It's funny because I saw an episode of Bizzare foods with Andrew Zimmern and he had snail Caviar. Perlite is "crispy" when you crush it with your fingers, this is more, uhhh, plump and alittle juicy (not that I tasted them lol). Nonetheless I took them out of my soil.

Still the question comes to mind, why do chams like shooting at white things in soil, the only thing I can think of is other reptiles/bugs eggs suspended in a tree and or substrate of some sort. Sorry for the late reply.
 
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