Leo’s Enclosure

extrajordinary

Established Member
Hi everyone! Here’s some photos of Leo’s enclosure! I was hoping for some feedback and any suggestions, particularly from really experienced owners. Also, how do you all attach horizontal dowel rods to your screen cages? I’ve attached a photo of how I did it but I don’t know that it’s really that stable.

Disclaimer: Leo is in a classroom. I got him when he was 2-3 months old this past October and he’s been in the classroom the entire time (with the exception of two weeks during winter break and a week during the polar vortex) and he’s growing and doing really well. He pays no mind to the kiddos and they all follow our “Chameleon Code” to keep Leo happy and healthy.
 

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Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Looking good. You may want to pull his UVB lighting forward more even diagonal across the top. This way it shines across more of the enclosure instead of just the back side. Better disbursement of the light rays that way. I have seen where people will attach the dowels like that with larger flat push pins from the outside. You might consider adding more horizontal pathways. The exo terra vines are great for this. Neat idea for the kids. :)
 

Brodybreaux25

Chameleon Enthusiast
Can’t think of a worse environment for a young Cham. Pretty sure I tried to talk you out of this before, since I didn’t succeed before I know I won’t now. So all I can do now is help you make the cage as comfortable for him as I can....

Dowel rods- get some tiny screws and tiny washers to fit them, then screw them in from the outside of the viv, the washer is the key part here. May need someone to help hold the rod while you screw it in. Push pins work to but tend to loosen over time.

Empty space- fill every part of his cage with either live plants or branches. Empty space in a Cham viv = wasted space. Think of the branches as roads.

Hiding spots - this is going to be the most important part of his viv given his environment. For Chams height and hiding spaces = security. Be sure to build in a good hiding spot somewhere around the top back wall of his viv.

I would love to read your “chameleon code!”
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
The Chameleon Code is posted to the left of Leo's cage, from what I can see!

How old are the kiddos? I can see that being difficult for a chameleon, depending on how it's managed. It might be a good idea to get him a "privacy screen" (room divider, curtain, whatever) for when the kids are being especially active/rowdy. That's what I do for my Karma to shield him from my large parrot when she's out and about! Monty makes very sudden movements, and I know it unnerves Karma even when he doesn't immediately respond to her. That sort of stress over time can make them susceptible to illness.

Beyond that, Beman and Brody have already given you excellent advice. Good luck with the little guy!

~Amanda
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Awww I just saw the code. I personally think it is an awesome idea. I know that others will not but when we teach children from a young age to respect animals of all kinds and have codes such as you have it teaches them qualities to carry through their life. And who knows maybe you will touch some of your children by having this Chameleon in the class and they will grow up to be Cham lovers or Veterinarians.

I think adding more live plants like a pothos would be beneficial as Brody said they feel safe when they can hide. You could get Dragon ledges to secure pots, rods, and vines through out the enclosure. https://dragonstrand.com/dragon-ledges/

I like Amanda's idea of a room divider as well when you are doing more active activities.
 

Brodybreaux25

Chameleon Enthusiast
If there is a correct way to do this I think your on the right track. How are you measuring temperature and humidity?

Filling out the help form is your best path forward.
Please fill out the “how to ask for help” form and post your answers back here. Quality pictures will help us help you.

Chameleon Info:
◦Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care?
◦Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon?
◦Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders?
◦Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule?
◦Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking?
◦Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites?
◦History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you.

Cage Info:
◦Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
◦Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
◦Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
◦Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
◦Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind?
◦Placement - Where is your cage located? Is it near any fans, air vents, or high traffic areas? At what height is the top of the cage relative to your room floor?
◦Location - Where are you geographically located?

Current Problem - The current problem you are concerned about.

--------------

Please Note:
1The more details you provide the better and more accurate help you will receive.
2Photos can be very helpful.
 

salty dog

Chameleon Enthusiast
Wonderful experience for the kids!! I agree with the curtain idea so part of the time the cham will have time to feel safe...from us giant predators, it would also help to get a human tolerant cham, matt vanilla gorilla has some I believe, also chams need correct temps, I believe if you researched all should be well... p.s. more vines or branches
 

extrajordinary

Established Member
If there is a correct way to do this I think your on the right track. How are you measuring temperature and humidity?

Filling out the help form is your best path forward.
Please fill out the “how to ask for help” form and post your answers back here. Quality pictures will help us help you.

Chameleon Info:
◦Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care?
◦Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon?
◦Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders?
◦Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule?
◦Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking?
◦Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites?
◦History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you.


Cage Info:
◦Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
◦Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
◦Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
◦Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
◦Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind?
◦Placement - Where is your cage located? Is it near any fans, air vents, or high traffic areas? At what height is the top of the cage relative to your room floor?
◦Location - Where are you geographically located?


Current Problem - The current problem you are concerned about.

--------------

Please Note:
1The more details you provide the better and more accurate help you will receive.
2Photos can be very helpful.
Your Chameleon - Veiled chameleon; male; 6-7 months old; he has been in my care for nearly 4 months (I got him on October 18, 2018)
Handling - I very rarely handle Leo. I corralled him onto my hand a few weeks ago because I wanted to get a closer look at his casque (I though maybe he had a burn) and while I was holding him he bit me. Made me bleed a little, but he didn't want to be held and I forced it to check him out.
Feeding - He is eating medium sized crickets. I feed the crickets kale and carrots. The amount of crickets I feed him varies a little, but I try to feed him between 10-15 crickets daily. I've been told he should be allowed to each as much as he wants at his current age.
Supplements - I dust the crickets with calcium with D3 and a multivitamin once every two weeks and calcium without D3 at every feeding.
Watering - There is a dripper in the corner and I mist his cage 2-3 times daily.
Fecal Description - He has decent sized poops with a slight odor and his urates are white.
History - He is from FL Chams. I was told he was 2-3 months when I got him on October 18, 2018.

Cage Type - He has a Zoo Med X-Large Repti Breeze Aluminum Screen Cage. It measures 2' by 2' by 4'. There is a shower curtain attached to three sides to help with the humidity.
Lighting - I'm using a Zoo Med Repti Sun Terrarium Hood 24 inch with a Zoo Med 24" Repti Sun 5.0 UVB bulb. For heat I have a Zoo Med regular black ceramic clip lamp with a regular incandescent lightbulb. It's 100 watts. The lights turn on at 5 in the morning and turn off at 5/5:30 in the evening.
Temperature - The basking spot ranges from 80-85. I don't know what the temperature in the bottom of the cage is or what it has been at night. I've been using an analog temperature gauge.
Humidity - The humidity rests around 30-40% now that it's winter, and after I mist the enclosure it climbs to about 70%. It gradually decreases over several hours. As I mentioned, I have a shower curtain attached to the enclosure to help maintain the humidity levels. I also use an analog hygrometer. I've recently placed a humidifier near his cage to help with humidity. It's set to turn on for about 5 hours at night/early morning.
Plants - Yes, I have a ficus. The ficus was purchased from LLL Reptile.
Placement - It is in the corner of the room, away from the windows and doors. The top of the cage is probably about 6-7 feet off of the ground. It's a 4' cage that sits on top of a plastic utility tub.
Location - North Chicago, about 20-25 miles north of Chicago.

I don't have any particular concerns. Just looking for suggestions and to see if I'm doing anything wrong.
 

extrajordinary

Established Member
Wonderful experience for the kids!! I agree with the curtain idea so part of the time the cham will have time to feel safe...from us giant predators, it would also help to get a human tolerant cham, matt vanilla gorilla has some I believe, also chams need correct temps, I believe if you researched all should be well... p.s. more vines or branches
Thank you for your encouragement! My kids adore Leo. I've been truly amazed by how careful and thoughtful they've been towards him. They typically come into class and look to see what he's up to and then they leave him alone. They'll look at him on occasion during class, but for the most part they let him be. The majority of my students are low-income and cannot afford to have a pet, let alone a pet as expensive to care for as a chameleon. I also had a student tell me recently that she's never seen a penguin. My kiddos just haven't had many experiences and opportunities, especially regarding animals, and I thought this would be a wonderful thing to do for and with them.
 
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