New Chameleon Mom


New Member
Hi everyone!

I'm a new chameleon mom. Last week we brought little Blue home. He's the cutest baby Nosey Be Panther Chameleon we've ever seen, but then all new parents say that.

While we do have two other juveniles, Buddy and Holly, both beardies, Blue is our very first chameleon and we're nervous about his care. I can see by reading this forum there are some great experienced chameleon lovers out there and we hope to tap into your vast knowledge and experience from time to time!

The question(s) I have today are: (1) Should I be concerned about the water that is left standing in the bottom of the enclosure each day after misting (the timer is set on misting three times a day)? It seems like there's a little bit more water left in there each day and I'm beginning to wonder if I should start sponging some of it out of there?

Right now the bottom of the cage is full of little rocks but the water is starting to reach the top of the layer of rocks. And, (2) how often should I take everything out and clean out his cage? I don't want to stress him out by trying to clean everything up too often in there.

Thanks for your help!

I dont know anything about chams but im just taking a wild guess that the rocks at the bottom are bad cause he might eat them?
Hi Shelby,

First, the rocks are a bad idea for the reason that Austin mentioned. I have seen my cham shoot at a cricket and snag a leaf or other small matter and swallow it along with the cricket. You certainly wouldn't want one of those small rocks to end up as a blockage in your chameleon's intestines. Water pooling on the floor is also not a great thing at all, and more concerning than the rocks. Chameleons are prone to upper respiratory infections caused by high bacteria levels in their cages. One of the biggest reasons for keeping a chameleon in a screened cage is to keep the air circulating and to dry out the water. The point of this is to decrease the amount of bacteria in the cage. Drainage is one of those issues that is regularly discussed in keeping a chameleon. I replaced the wood floor in my homemade cage with screen, crossed with metal bars to support the plants I have in the cage. Underneath the entire cage is a plastic pan with a faucet drain on one end. The water drains from the pan to a bucket. I have seen many, many draining solutions, ranging from simple to complex. You definately need to address this. Here is an article in Chameleons! Online Ezine about watering and drainage:

Can you tell us about your husbandry? Is your cham in a screened cage? What type of lights are you using? What are your temperatures and humidity at? Do you have plants in the cage? What kind of misting system are using? How long are your misting cycles? What are you feeding your new cham? How old is it and is it a female or a male?

Welcome to this challenging and fascinating hobby!

Hello again,

Cleaning: I spot clean my chameleon's cage daily by picking up the poo and wiping down any nasty leaves, etc. I do a more thorough cleaning once a week by taking the cham out of the cage, moving things around and wiping everything down with a disinfectant. Once a month I tear down the entire cage and scrub the heck out it and all of its furniture.

Thank you Heika for the information!

Currently little Blue is in a 12x12x18 Glass Terrarium that came with him. I have an auto misting machine set for every 3 hours for 30 seconds (we called the Reptile store and they said to start with that). I have the Reptile UV lighting strip and a 25w basking spot lamp. The temp is usually between 70-80 and the humidity between 45-65.

I've been giving him small crickets and fruit flies so far and he just has a wooden climbing piece of driftwood thing with an artificial leafy vine wrapped all around for climbing. He's a little male and the reptile store said he was born in November.

I am concerned though about his climbing upside down on the top of the screen. I saw him fall today. :^(

I removed all the rocks (they were big rocks which he could not eat now but definitely could when he gets bigger) and cleaned the glass sides. We've only had Blue 8 days so far so hopefully we can correct this issue(s) before anything happens to him.

Any other advice is appreciated as we want to provide a long, healthy and happy life for our little Blue.

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Hi Shelby,

If he was born in November, that means he is only a month, maybe a month and a half...? Most reputable breeders will not sell a chameleon that young, especially to a person who has never owned a chameleon before. They are difficult little animals to keep. He is going to need some specialized care for the next month or two. Chris and Neil have raised neonates I think, hopefully they will be on soon and give you some advise on keeping the little guy. In the meantime, here are some articles to read over:

Good sites to just.. start reading!

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