Montane/submontane Basking Temps?

Zach Valois

New Member
Perhaps I have overlooked some information somewhere, but I am having a hard time deciding on what is an appropriate basking temp for some of the montane/submontane taxa (Trioceros, Kinyongia, etc). I have been running 40 watt tube incandescents (Sun Glo Bulbs) in 12x12x18, 18x18x24, and 24x24x24 exo terras, which provides appropriate ambient temps (70-72 at the bottom of the exo terras, around 85-88 at the top). However, in my shop, I momentarily placed a 150 watt Halogen on one of my Jackson's enclosures and was astounded to see a male get right up to the light and sit for hours. My Jacks and Cresteds do hug the heat a bit, but I am afraid to heat the cages up too much.

So, what are you running on your montanes? What basking temps seem appropriate to you? Is there any published information for what basking temps and time spent basking in the wild?

Thanks guys, your help is greatly appreciated.
 

Zach Valois

New Member
I might add that I am somewhat restricted on bulb wattage due to the nature of glass vivariums, and the limitations of the Exo Terra Brand fixtures (which I hear do not handle heating bulbs well). As per reading with a temp gun, the animals body temp hover right around 88 F. It looks like I may want to be more the 90-95 range on a strongly basking animal?

I guess I will just have to experiment with some different bulbs to see what keeps my fixtures from melting and allows for acceptable ambient temp gradients within the Exo Terras.

I am thinking high 80's for general upper ambient to mid 70's (or lower?) for the lower cool areas. I can and will of course judge by the reaction of the chameleons to higher temps.

It seems like I may need to switch to more spot fixed type bulbs and use small domes to achieve such..
 

Monzon

Established Member
I am curious about this as well. I have had jackson's that seemed to really dig the basking heat. And I have highland hoehnelii that seem always to find the warmest of many different, choice basking sites. I don't think an exact temp at an exact spot is as good as a range of temps at several, equally appealing sites. But that doesn't answer your query, and I am still curious what other keepers do........
 

Monzon

Established Member
The halogen spot bulbs are good but I have found that they can produce very high temps on an area the size of a quarter. Double and triple check your spot temp readings and err on the side of safety until you get them dialed in.
 

Cainschams

New Member
When inside I give my Trioceros, Bradypodion and Kinyongia a basking site of around 82 to 85. Ive seen them all basking outside when temps are in the 80s. I think you are fine with your basking temps especially since they can go cool down at the lower parts of the cage.
 

chrisw

Member
Chris is great - but Cain is Duke of montanes! Pay attention when he speaks about montane basking temps! yours sound good. everyone will tell you that that they like it cool, which is true - but you'll find them in your warm spot every morning and after chow time.
 
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