New Chameleon Owner

Hi,

I just got a young panther chameleon (4 months old - most likely male) and want to clarify 2 things that seem to differ based on the writer of the posts.

1. Water: I have a reptile fogger I spray into the cage and live plants inside the cage. Is that enough water for him and how frequently should I keep it on?

2. Nutrients: I have calcium w/ D and calcium w/o D and a multivitamin. How frequently is it recommended to give those three? Does it change as adults?

I have seen posts say different things so I was wondering if I missed anything that is 'well-known'.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
1) Your chameleon needs droplets of water to drink off the leaves. This can be done by misting. Fogging should only be done at night to avoid RI's. I mist 4x a day for a total of 3 mins.

2) calcium everyday, multivitamin once every other week, calcium + D3 once every other week. Gutloading your bugs with proper food is also super important here. It doesn't change when they become adults but what does change is their feeding schedule. Feeding every other day instead of every day.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
Most of us who use the three different powders use the same schedule of dusting...do it lightly...you don't want the insects to look like ghosts.

As for vitamin A its fat soluble like vitamin D3 is from supplements...both can build up in the system so you have to be careful with both. Also, vitamins A and D need to be in balance with each other. PrOformed Vitamin A (beta carotene) will not build up so I always recommend using a vitamin powder with a beta carotene source of vitamin A.

However...there is controversy as to whether all chameleons can convert the beta carotene into useable vitamin A...so some people give the chameleon a bit of prEformed (palmitate, retinal, retinol, etc.) vitamin A once in a while to make sure they have some without overdosing it.

There has been no exact determination of what a chameleon really needs so we all do what we feel/find works for us and that's all we can do at this point.

Phos and calcium also have to be in balance and there is enough phos in the insects so we dust with the calcium powder to make up for the imbalance.

I hope this helps a bit.
 
Last edited:

Brodybreaux25

Chameleon Enthusiast
Put this on every feeder you give him, light dusting. It’s an alternative to the 3 supplement schedule described above. Both are accepted and proven.

Repashy Calcium Plus LoD 3 Oz JAR https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00DLJRMV2/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_M4AQDbQP9KYED

You would benefit from filling out the help form, our members will review it with you and ensure everything is in good shape. Link in my signature.
 
Chameleon Info:
  • Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care?
Unknown panther variety, most likely male (WILL POST PICS: I just want to leave him alone for a day or two and not try to bug him with pictures as he was just bought on October 17th), 3.5 months old.
  • Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon?
As of now I do not handle him but want to try the technique of sitting in a chair next to the open cage holding a treat like a meal worm.
  • Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders?
1/8th size crickets was recommended by the breeder for now and I have not made a schedule yet but they are gutloaded with carrots and potatoes.
  • Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule?
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B003XLJ6G2/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B005FTMGYO/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B005FTMHFC/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Those are the three supplements I have and it was recommended to do the calcium daily, calcium w/ D monthly, and multivitamin weekly.

I may look in to the all in one Repashy posted above
  • Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking?
I have live plants to build droplets, I will fog at night with my reptile fogger and mist during the day as recommended above. He drank the droplets that built up on the screen top of the cage from the fogger as soon as he was in his cage last night
  • Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites?
Have not seen droppings yet and I do not think he has been tested. Do most vets do this?
  • History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you.
No previous information besides the age and that its panther.

Cage Info:
  • Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
Aluminum screen cage all around. 16x16x30
  • Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00CYDE8IG/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

This light and it was recommended to give them light 10 hours a day but the UVA/vis light bulb produces a lot of heat and I don't want him getting burns so any recommendations are welcome here (I have light outlet timers for both bulbs).
  • Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
I have a programmable temperature gauge and I want the temp gradient to be roughly 75-90F in the day and haven't measured the temp of the bottom of the cage but he does have foliage lower to hide under.

The room is roughly 68F on the thermostat at night.
  • Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
I have a programmable humidity regulator that the fogger runs through if the humidity falls too low. I have read between 60-85% RH which is a huge range so I would like some recommendations here
  • Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind?
Yes live plants. I looked them up to make sure they were safe before putting them in but I don't have the names right now - will edit in soon.
  • 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?
No fans - air vent on other side of the room - no traffic at all - the cage is on a 1 foot high coffee table
  • Location - Where are you geographically located?
Southern Ontario - Canada
 
Update:

I have a Yucca plant, mimosa, spider plant. I found lists saying those were safe. What about an olive tree? someone on reddit said it was poisonous to them is that true?
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
See my notes in red

Chameleon Info:
  • Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care?
Unknown panther variety, most likely male (WILL POST PICS: I just want to leave him alone for a day or two and not try to bug him with pictures as he was just bought on October 17th), 3.5 months old.
  • Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon?
As of now I do not handle him but want to try the technique of sitting in a chair next to the open cage holding a treat like a meal worm.
  • Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders?
1/8th size crickets was recommended by the breeder for now and I have not made a schedule yet but they are gutloaded with carrots and potatoes.
  • Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule?
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B003XLJ6G2/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B005FTMGYO/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B005FTMHFC/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Those are the three supplements I have and it was recommended to do the calcium daily, calcium w/ D monthly, and multivitamin weekly.

I may look in to the all in one Repashy posted above
  • Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking?
I have live plants to build droplets, I will fog at night with my reptile fogger and mist during the day as recommended above. He drank the droplets that built up on the screen top of the cage from the fogger as soon as he was in his cage last night
  • Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites?
Have not seen droppings yet and I do not think he has been tested. Do most vets do this?
  • History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you.
No previous information besides the age and that its panther.

Cage Info:
  • Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
Aluminum screen cage all around. 16x16x30

This is fine for now but will need to be upgraded in near future to at least a 2x2x4
  • Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00CYDE8IG/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

This light and it was recommended to give them light 10 hours a day but the UVA/vis light bulb produces a lot of heat and I don't want him getting burns so any recommendations are welcome here (I have light outlet timers for both bulbs).

This is junk. You'll need a T5HO with at least a 5.0 or 6% bulb. These coil bulbs produce little to no usable UVB light to keep your Cham healthy and free from MBD. Your basking bulb should burn out by tomorrow. You can pick up a Phillips plant light bulb 50w at Lowes for $6
  • Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
I have a programmable temperature gauge and I want the temp gradient to be roughly 75-90F in the day and haven't measured the temp of the bottom of the cage but he does have foliage lower to hide under.

The room is roughly 68F on the thermostat at night.

Young chameleons should be kept between 78-85*F.
  • Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
I have a programmable humidity regulator that the fogger runs through if the humidity falls too low. I have read between 60-85% RH which is a huge range so I would like some recommendations here

Chameleons have a day/night cycle when it comes to humidity. In nature the Panther sees 50-60% humidity during the day and 90-100% humidity at night. The closest you can replicate this the better for natural hydration. The important part is allowing the cage to dry out between mistings.
  • Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind?
Yes live plants. I looked them up to make sure they were safe before putting them in but I don't have the names right now - will edit in soon.
  • 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?
No fans - air vent on other side of the room - no traffic at all - the cage is on a 1 foot high coffee table
  • Location - Where are you geographically located?
Southern Ontario - Canada
 
See my notes in red

Cage Info:
  • Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
Aluminum screen cage all around. 16x16x30

This is fine for now but will need to be upgraded in near future to at least a 2x2x4
  • Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00CYDE8IG/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

This light and it was recommended to give them light 10 hours a day but the UVA/vis light bulb produces a lot of heat and I don't want him getting burns so any recommendations are welcome here (I have light outlet timers for both bulbs).

This is junk. You'll need a T5HO with at least a 5.0 or 6% bulb. These coil bulbs produce little to no usable UVB light to keep your Cham healthy and free from MBD. Your basking bulb should burn out by tomorrow. You can pick up a Phillips plant light bulb 50w at Lowes for $6
  • Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
I have a programmable temperature gauge and I want the temp gradient to be roughly 75-90F in the day and haven't measured the temp of the bottom of the cage but he does have foliage lower to hide under.

The room is roughly 68F on the thermostat at night.

Young chameleons should be kept between 78-85*F.
  • Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
I have a programmable humidity regulator that the fogger runs through if the humidity falls too low. I have read between 60-85% RH which is a huge range so I would like some recommendations here

Chameleons have a day/night cycle when it comes to humidity. In nature the Panther sees 50-60% humidity during the day and 90-100% humidity at night. The closest you can replicate this the better for natural hydration. The important part is allowing the cage to dry out between mistings.


I already have a 2x2x4 on a 1 foot high coffee table ready to roll. Thank you SO SO much for the temp and humidity advice I will follow that.

As for my light being junk that is very annoying. I will return it. So that UV-B bulb says its a 5.0 but its junk and the basking bulb will not heat for long? greaaaat. I will do more research.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
Regarding the lights...I recommend the long linear reptisun 5.0 for UVB and a regular incandescent household bulb of a wattage that puts the basking temperature at what you want. To test if it will burn he chameleon or not....put your hand at the spot closest to the basking light inside the cage...if it feels too hot and you have to move your hand then raise it up.

Regarding feeding/gutloading insects like crickets, superworms, locusts, roaches, etc. I use greens such as dandelion greens, collards, endive, escarole, kale, etc and veggies such as carrots, squash, zucchini, sweet red peppers, sweet potatoes, etc and a bit of fruit such as berries, apples, melon, pears, etc.
 
Regarding the lights...I recommend the long linear reptisun 5.0 for UVB and a regular incandescent household bulb of a wattage that puts the basking temperature at what you want. To test if it will burn he chameleon or not....put your hand at the spot closest to the basking light inside the cage...if it feels too hot and you have to move your hand then raise it up.

Regarding feeding/gutloading insects like crickets, superworms, locusts, roaches, etc. I use greens such as dandelion greens, collards, endive, escarole, kale, etc and veggies such as carrots, squash, zucchini, sweet red peppers, sweet potatoes, etc and a bit of fruit such as berries, apples, melon, pears, etc.

Okay, so it sounds like I need a small insect cage and should start gutloading myself.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
I already have a 2x2x4 on a 1 foot high coffee table ready to roll. Thank you SO SO much for the temp and humidity advice I will follow that.

As for my light being junk that is very annoying. I will return it. So that UV-B bulb says its a 5.0 but its junk and the basking bulb will not heat for long? greaaaat. I will do more research.
Yeah there's a huge difference between a coil screw in 5.0 bulb and a linear T5HO 5.0.

 

The Wild One

Chameleon Enthusiast
I already have a 2x2x4 on a 1 foot high coffee table ready to roll. Thank you SO SO much for the temp and humidity advice I will follow that.

As for my light being junk that is very annoying. I will return it. So that UV-B bulb says its a 5.0 but its junk and the basking bulb will not heat for long? greaaaat. I will do more research.
We’ve all been on that boat before
 
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