Need help with Jackson Chameleons!

I am experienced with Veiled Chameleons, but just purchased a "pair" of Jacksons yesterday at my LPS. I had noticed them there last week. They are both about 4" from nose to back legs. They were being housed together in a typical enclosure you would see in a shop. It's probably about an 18' cube.

I have been using this shop for years and they are generally very dependable. Knowing that Veileds' need to be housed only one per cage, I asked why there was a pair of Jacksons' being housed together. I was told that they were a "pair" and that they had come in together and that Jacksons' are one of the only species where a pair can live in the same cage.

Humm...... I went home wondering! Well, yesterday morning I got on the computer and read that, yes, they can be housed together! I was so excited that I went right down to purchase them for my preschool, which is at my home.

My Veiled had passed away about a month ago, and I was planning to put his cage away, but the kids really missed him and so did I. So I brought the pair home and put them into my large, 24x24x48H cage. I cleaned it of course first. It has excellent lighting and I am an experienced keeper regarding food, water, vitamins, etc (at least with Veileds).

Male was/is bright green and active. The famale has dark,wide blackish stripes with smaller "v" areas of a kind of light greenish/yellow. She mostly stays in the same place and I have seen her occassionally rock slightly back and forth. They both ate crickets yesterday.

Of course, now I am seeing a lot of conflicting information regarding housing them together (Note to self: When it sounds too good to be true, it probably is! LOL!) So, I want to hear from a real source that has experience with Jackson's about what I need to do!

I have an extra smaller screen cage that I can move one of them into, and I have had some successful experience breeding and hatching Veiled eggs many years ago, but am definitely a beginner with Jacksons! Please tell me what to do and watch for so I can hopefully have a happy, healthy female.

One last thought, the male doesn't really bother her. He pretty much does his own thing. Also, I haven't seen her act out agressively when he does come near, but her coloring is bothering me. Especially since it looks the same this morning as it did yesterday when I brought them home. Thanks for your help and advice!! :)
 

Solid Snake

Avid Member
Welcome to CF! Were super glad youve stopped by, and joined us ;)


They cannot or at least really shouldnt be housed together.

If you had an extremely large enclosure it may be workable, but were talking extremely large.

They need to be separated.

The nutritional needs of jacksons are different from veilds, and supplementing them can be tricky.

Watch this in its entirety:


(watch it alot)

Then read all of this:
https://www.chameleonforums.com/care/caresheets/jacksons/

Good luck!
 
Thanks for your quick reply! I absolutely will watch and read right away. I have a couple more quick questions I hope I can get answers for asap.

First, which one would be best to move to smaller cage? Also, should I put cages in seperate rooms, or is it ok in same room if separated by like 15 or more feet? And last, can someone give me an educated guess as to how old they are? I put a ruler up to cage and am estimating that they are probably about 4 inches long from head to hind legs.

I am also beginning to think that they might sibblings! That might explain why they seem to at least kind of get along. If they are sibblings, they shouldn't be mated, right??? Or maybe it is OK. Breeding is NOT the reason I got them, but if they could be bred, It might be fun to try it sometime in the future. I noticed they are live bearers, rather than egg layers! Am going to get smaller cage out now (18x18x36) I can buy larger one later, but at least I have this one for now! Thanks!!
 
I would put the cages next to each other with somthing in between the cages so they can't see each other. If they are siblings I think breeding will be okay if you don't breed the baby's back with them.
Here's a pic of my jackson. He's 14 months old so he's full grown(i think) and you can compare him to yours. My female is a little bit smaller than him
 

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leedragon

Avid Member
they can be housed together but need alot of space and alot of plant so if they want to be alone they just go to the other side of the cage, in the other hand, chamelons and kids are not good together, they need quiet and calmness if they see kid with bright colored clothes runnig around they can get stressed and die of that
 
Here we go with the conflicting information! LOL I am going to separate mine just to be on the safe side. My chameleon cage in a corner in our library area where the children are fairly quiet. It is also placed up on a table so it is out of reach. I personally have never heard of any species of chameleon dieing from stress from the color of clothing someone is wearing or from children being around. Of course common sense in placement of cage and not handling them is key to their success in any home. I appreciate everyone's comments though!! Thanks!!
 

leedragon

Avid Member
well the safe side is to keep them separated, and gravid females should always be alone, jacksoniis are far more fragile than veileds, and yes chamelons react to colors, as I said childerns and chamelons are no good combinations but I hope you find a good place to place them if you are going to go with this anyway, wish you well
 

Solid Snake

Avid Member
Stress will kill them.

If they are stressed, they are not doing what they need to do to take care of themselves, such as thermoregulating, hunting, and drinking. This leads to their demise.

Something as simple as a bright shirt can stress them yes.

I would classify a library as being no place for a chameleon, especially if children are the ones using the library.

It doesnt matter how close together they are really, the main thing is for them not to be able to see each other(it will stress them).
It is easier to accomplish this by having them side by side, with a divider, as they have very good vision, and could see each other from across a large room.

It doesnt matter which one you put in the smaller cage, they both want the biggest space they can get.

You could look at this thread to maybe get an age reference, but theres really no way to be sure. https://www.chameleonforums.com/baby-jacksons-growth-59613/index5.html#post674902
 
OK, so I read information sheet and watched video. I found the misting part most interesting! I guess my main concern at this point is seperating them and then whether or not they are old enough that the female could be pregnaunt. Am going to look at more information on forum, but still appreciate input from live people!! :)
 
Wow, I guess Jackson's are much more difficult to keep than Veiled! My veiled lived for years in the library area and was really healthy and happy! I'm actually thinking about taking them back because it sounds like I'm going to fail! Interesting though, so far the green male seems really happy and adjusted. He's bright green, alert and eating and drinking well. The female has lightened up just a bit and she is moving around a little more. She is also eating and drinking.

For the moment, I think I will move her to the smaller cage and put it in my bedroom where it is quiet (no kids) and see what happens to her color.
 

radstusky

Avid Member
It's hard to say what their age is, but they could be full grown. Here's a link to thread about my Jackson's. He's a big boy and on page two in this thread I posted a growth chart as well.

https://www.chameleonforums.com/drake-jacksons-chameleon-looking-handsome-90180/

I would agree that they should be separated, but I've never had more than one Jackson's myself. I have mine next to my panther with a roller shade mounted to the panther's cage in order to block their views of each other. At first they could see each other and they were definitely stressed. Good luck!
 

Solid Snake

Avid Member
Wow, I guess Jackson's are much more difficult to keep than Veiled! My veiled lived for years in the library area and was really healthy and happy! I'm actually thinking about taking them back because it sounds like I'm going to fail! Interesting though, so far the green male seems really happy and adjusted. He's bright green, alert and eating and drinking well. The female has lightened up just a bit and she is moving around a little more. She is also eating and drinking.

For the moment, I think I will move her to the smaller cage and put it in my bedroom where it is quiet (no kids) and see what happens to her color.
Ive never kept veilds, but they are supposedly comparable to panthers.

If they are, I would say jacksons are not necessarily harder to keep, just different.

Just to make a point, do you really know your veild was happy and healthy? How many year did it live? Again, just rhetorical to make a point.

I will say my jackson very much liked her privacy, more so than my panther. I kept her cage dense with foliage, and she was rarely readily noticeable.

Also, I would think having that much water running through two cages in a library would at the very least be a severe pain. They really do need alot of water.

If you think you should take them back, Id say you are a smart person for considering that an option. Even if its not the option you choose.

Can you post pictures of these animals?
 
My Veiled actually lived for almost 7 years, which is within the norm for them. You have a couple of very good points! First, I really don't think any exotic is ever really "happy" when caged! I guess I mean't as happy as could be expected under the circumstances! :)

I did reptile rescue work for years and you'd be surprised (or maybe not) at the conditions many reptiles live in! I spent over 10 years doing presentations to groups about proper care and husbandry of a variety of reptiles, mostly the large ones. Most important was trying to get the word out that choosing the right type/size of reptile is very important! Some should never even be considered as "pets" and in my opinion should not be for sale at all! Sorry, I got off topic!! LOL!

Anyway, my veiled was very healthy, had the best of care and lived a long and "happy" life under the circumstances.

My real issue right now is exactly what you pointed out!! I don't want a misting set up in the library area!! I have the ability to spray them many times a day because I am here, but after looking at the video you shared earlier, I definitely think they deserve a full mist system. I need to decide if I want to keep them, or even one of them, and set them up in another room in the back of my house where the misting wouldn't matter so much. Or I may decide to return them, which I can do.

I trusted the guy at the shop to be accurate in answering the questions I asked, but he definitely got a couple of key ones wrong! I should not have assumed he was correct! I actually know better, but I guess we all get excited once in awhile and jump on something too quickly! :(

I did take a pic of each, but it might take me a bit to figure out how to post it. Unfortunately, I am NOT computer literate! Thank you for your help with my situation! I appreciate your time!
 

jfulcher

New Member
OKAY!!! I HAVE TO STEP IN HERE!!!

I am a beginning breeder w/Jackson's... They have been TOGETHER, IN THE SAME 2'x2'x2' CAGE THE ENTIRE TIME!!! Foliage, hiding spots, excellent misting, & supplementing is key!!! DO NOT let these guys scare you into shoving any of your Jackson's into a separate cage! It's downright maddening when they do this!!! PM me if you would like to hear more about Jackson's...! I'm always home.!!!
 

Action Jackson

Chameleon Enthusiast
OKAY!!! I HAVE TO STEP IN HERE!!!

I am a beginning breeder w/Jackson's... They have been TOGETHER, IN THE SAME 2'x2'x2' CAGE THE ENTIRE TIME!!! Foliage, hiding spots, excellent misting, & supplementing is key!!! DO NOT let these guys scare you into shoving any of your Jackson's into a separate cage! It's downright maddening when they do this!!! PM me if you would like to hear more about Jackson's...! I'm always home.!!!
OKAY NOW I HAVE TO STEP IN!!:D

First off I got to say success with Chameleons is not measured in days, weeks or months but in years.

You may be able to keep sub adult Jacksons together for a while but in my experience one will always dominate over the other which will cause stress that can lead to health problems. These signs of stress can be obvious or subtle. It usually starts with one chameleon getting more of the food supply.

From reading your previous posts you've only had Jackson's for a couple months. You can easily house Sub adult Jackson's a few months with out noticing thier stress levels if you're not experienced. You have been given advice by people that have years of experience with Jackson's, what you chose to do with that advise is up to you.

I am housing female Merumontanous together at the moment but I can see the effects of doing so. I'm also housing 2 male Merumontanous together since birth but will be moving all of these to seperately cages very soon. Carefull observation will show you that there is indeed stress going on when housed together.

Good luck with what ever you chose to do. Have you had babies yet?
 

deadhd5

Avid Member
OKAY!!! I HAVE TO STEP IN HERE!!!

I am a beginning breeder w/Jackson's... They have been TOGETHER, IN THE SAME 2'x2'x2' CAGE THE ENTIRE TIME!!! Foliage, hiding spots, excellent misting, & supplementing is key!!! DO NOT let these guys scare you into shoving any of your Jackson's into a separate cage! It's downright maddening when they do this!!! PM me if you would like to hear more about Jackson's...! I'm always home.!!!
"They" are advanced chameleon keepers whose advice is brought to you from years of experience. IMO, nothing is more maddening than when people think they know better than the experts. Nothing can substitute for years of hands on experince and to suggest otherwise is pure hubris.

Action Jackson's and Solid Snake's advice is gold, and ascertained from years of working with these guys.
 
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