New Cham owner

Lkohls

New Member
Chameleon Info:
  • Your Chameleon - Female veiled Chameleon, young age unknown. Any guesses?
  • Handling - Out of cage two times a week for cleaning once and for socializing once. I hand feed once daily and she crawls onto my arm to feed. I don't force her, just hold the bug slightly out of reach and she climbs on to eat, off when she is done.
  • Feeding - medium sized dusted gutloaded (apple, orange, blueberries, greens) crickets 2x a day. Usually about 6 at each feeding. In the morning she free range hunts them and evening hand fed if she is in a good mood. She also eats 4-6 worms per day, Superworms and sometimes meal or wax worms, or a blueberry as a treat.
  • Supplements - Repticalcium without D3 daily. Zoomed Reptivite 1x per 2 weeks, Calcium with D3 1x per 4 weeks.
  • Watering - i have a dripper set up that runs all day. Water is treated with Reptisafe. I mist her cage 2-3 times a day depending on humidity for about a minute and a half or so. I see her drink occasionally but not always.
  • Fecal Description - dark brown droppings and white urates. Usually consistancy is firm but the past few days the urates and poop have been watery. Not yet tested for parasites.
  • History - got her from a petstore that had little information, but dod have a stamp of health and health guarantee.
Cage Info:
  • Cage Type - Screen reptibreeze enclosure. 16x16x30.
  • Lighting - Reptisun 5.0 UVB and 50 watt house light for basking.
  • Temperature - Ranges in tank during the day are between 75 to low 80s. Basking perch is usually around 86-88. I use two thermometers, analog in her tank and a digital to spot check.
  • Humidity - between 40 and 70 depending on spraying. I mist 3 times per day, once about an hour after lights come on, once when I get home, and once after dinner feeding about two hours before bed. I HAVE A humidifier that I keep in the room, but use it sparringly if I am habing a tough time with levels.
  • Plants - no live plants yet.
  • Placement - Cage is on top of a nightstand/ small dresser in a rarely trafficked office. Stands about 5'10 or 6 ft at top. It is a small office that does have a heat vent in it. Where is your cage located?
  • Location - virginia
Current Problem:

I am a new Cham owner and wanted to check in and see what advice anyone had. Any idea why her urates would be watery the past few days?
Not sure the age of my female, does anyone have a guess? Does she appear in good health or am I overlooking anything? Does my set up/husbandry seem okay? I have pothos on order to fill up the bottom but plan to leave it partially clear for a nest box. I love this girl, and want to make sure I do it right. I've done tons of research, but seems like this place is a wealth of knowledge, so anything you can offer is so appreciated!


-Lauren
 

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CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
She appears to be full grown if not close to it. I'd say she's at least 7 months if not older.
Here's a few of my recommendations and please note I'm no expert.
1) More branches and foliage for her to feel comfortable and hide if she wants/needs.
2) your UVB lighting is not ideal. You'll want to upgrade to a 24" T5HO linear UVB light from ZooMed or Arcadia. I'd recommend a 5.0 bulb (ZooMed) or 6% (Arcadia). The UVB bulb you currently have DOES Not do what it states and can even cause eye problems. Trust me they're more harm than good.
3) cage size is a little small. Female veileds although not as big as males will still benefit from a larger enclosure. 2'x2'x4' is ideal but I've heard of females being fine in a 18"x18"x36"
4) gutloading with citrusy type fruits is also not ideal for your chameleon. Blueberrys and Mangos are fine though.
Hope this helps and if you have anymore questions feel free to ask anytime! Welcome to the forum and your Female Translucent Chameleo Calypratus Calypratus is a beauty!
 

JoXie411

Chameleon Enthusiast
Basic info that helps. She’s a beautiful high translucent . My female is low translucent. Good luck with you new girl
 

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CC's Baby

Avid Member
She a beauty. Yes, definitely need to increase the foliage and "glens" in the habitat. They need to be able to "hide" when they want to as that is a natural instinct. Good luck with her! Welcome to the forum!
 

Syreptyon

Chameleon Enthusiast
Since she's a veiled, you should actually be using a 10.0 not a 5.0 and it must be a linear UVB model.

Agree with the cage needing to be bigger.

Respectfully, the biggest problem is that the inside of the enclosure is not set up well for a chameleon at all. It is about 95% empty, which is a cardinal sin in chameleon keeping. It looks to me like you are using one of the dreaded "chameleon kits," which in reality are not good at all except for the cage itself. The dual light dome is unable to offer the correct UVB. The little pad at the bottom of the enclosure will need to be removed ASAP, as it is doing nothing useful besides harboring dangerous bacteria and mold.

The two vines in there are, in my opinion, about 10-20% of what you need in terms of pathways for her to walk on. She needs at minimum half a dozen more branches, vines, walkways of your preference running horizontally across from one side of the enclosure to the other. Make sure to have these at all different levels of elevation throughout the cage. Remember: to chameleons, branches and vines are their "highways" in the enclosure. As it is right now, your girl has almost no where to go. Choose things with different diameters to allow her to stretch her feet.

The lack of foliage is the other big problem inside the enclosure. In addition to too few movement options, she also has no where to hide or feel secure. There is no better way to fix this than to add as many live plants as you can. Ficus and schefflera are good options in addition to the pothos you mentioned (I'm personally not a fan of pothos because of how flimsy they are).
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Since she's a veiled, you should actually be using a 10.0 not a 5.0 and it must be a linear UVB model.

Agree with the cage needing to be bigger.

Respectfully, the biggest problem is that the inside of the enclosure is not set up well for a chameleon at all. It is about 95% empty, which is a cardinal sin in chameleon keeping. It looks to me like you are using one of the dreaded "chameleon kits," which in reality are not good at all except for the cage itself. The dual light dome is unable to offer the correct UVB. The little pad at the bottom of the enclosure will need to be removed ASAP, as it is doing nothing useful besides harboring dangerous bacteria and mold.

The two vines in there are, in my opinion, about 10-20% of what you need in terms of pathways for her to walk on. She needs at minimum half a dozen more branches, vines, walkways of your preference running horizontally across from one side of the enclosure to the other. Make sure to have these at all different levels of elevation throughout the cage. Remember: to chameleons, branches and vines are their "highways" in the enclosure. As it is right now, your girl has almost no where to go. Choose things with different diameters to allow her to stretch her feet.

The lack of foliage is the other big problem inside the enclosure. In addition to too few movement options, she also has no where to hide or feel secure. There is no better way to fix this than to add as many live plants as you can. Ficus and schefflera are good options in addition to the pothos you mentioned (I'm personally not a fan of pothos because of how flimsy they are).
With little to no foliage and the cage being as small as it is I personally think a T5HO 10.0 is excessive. But as stated I'm no expert. Veileds in the wild aren't really even found basking. The dominant males being the exception.
 

Syreptyon

Chameleon Enthusiast
With little to no foliage and the cage being as small as it is I personally think a T5HO 10.0 is excessive. But as stated I'm no expert. Veileds in the wild aren't really even found basking. The dominant males being the exception.
Veiled chameleons come from an arid, sunny environment. It is routine that 5.0's are for panthers and 10.0's are for veileds. If the enclosure was set up properly, a 10.0 is the way to go
 

Graves923

Chameleon Enthusiast
This is so true. There are many times during the day, and especially before bed, that my cham is impossible to find in his enclosure. One time there were 3 of us searching for at least 15 minutes, and couldn't find him! He really excels at being a chameleon :)
My fiancee called me while I was at work recently freaking out because she couldn't find our chameleon and thought he somehow go out while she was cleaning the cage. I had to tell her to move a few branches on one side of the cage and look at the trunk of his tree. Sure enough he was chilling there the whole time. Its one of his favorite places to hide when there is a lot going on in that room.
 

Kiraral

Member
You’ve gotten some great advice, especially re: the lighting, foliage, and lay bin. I just HAD to chime in about how beautiful her markings are! I bet they will look even better when you upgrade the lights and her colors pop more :). Lovely girl.
 

Lkohls

New Member
Good Evening all,

I wanted to thank each of you for your help! What are your thoughts on this update?

For right now, this size will have to do, but I plan on getting a larger terrarium later this spring. In the meantime, I have added live plants and am now ordering a 24 inch T5HO 10.0 and fixture now. I am thinking a few more branches near the bottom?
I can't really fit a large plant in the middle without taking up the whole tank... should I not worry about crowding her?

That being said, I am also having a hard time setting up plants in the upper and middle areas of the set up to provide her coverage in the middle of the enclosure. Any ideas on what to use?

She has been super stressed and cranky since I added everything. How long will that last?

Thanks again you all for helping me out. You guys rock.

-Lauren
 

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CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Looks better! Sounds like you're on the right track. And as far as cage sooner rather than later is preferable she's already beginning to be a big girl. Don't forget about the lay bin too! And sometimes it takes them a day or 2 to get used to the changes.
 

Lkohls

New Member
Looks better! Sounds like you're on the right track. And as far as cage sooner rather than later is preferable she's already beginning to be a big girl. Don't forget about the lay bin too! And sometimes it takes them a day or 2 to get used to the changes.
Okay thanks, and I will try to get a larger terrarium soon.

For the lay bin I have a 20 gallon trash bin - 23x23 that I planned to move her into since she doesn't have that much room in her cage. I was going to wait until she slowed her eating, showed colors or started to dig.

The schfflera in her cage is currently in a 10x11 at the bottom of her tank so I figured I would wait until she was checking it out and move her. Will that be okay?

If not, could I plant the small schefflera in a 12x12 lay box and leave it?

Thanks!

Looks better! Sounds like you're on the right track. And as far as cage sooner rather than later is preferable she's already beginning to be a big girl. Don't forget about the lay bin too! And sometimes it takes them a day or 2 to get used to the changes.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Okay thanks, and I will try to get a larger terrarium soon.

For the lay bin I have a 20 gallon trash bin - 23x23 that I planned to move her into since she doesn't have that much room in her cage. I was going to wait until she slowed her eating, showed colors or started to dig.

The schfflera in her cage is currently in a 10x11 at the bottom of her tank so I figured I would wait until she was checking it out and move her. Will that be okay?

If not, could I plant the small schefflera in a 12x12 lay box and leave it?

Thanks!
Yes I think that would suffice. Best of luck to you two and remember to stay active on here when you can and post lots of pics as she grows
 
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