New veiled chameleon owner with questions.

DerekFerReal

New Member
Hoping a few of you informative people can reassure me that I'm doing everything right to ensure my new Veiled Chameleon is going to do as well as possible in her new enclosure.

I've read hours of info on various websites regarding everything from enclosures to feeding to drinking, etc..

I've gotten a big screen enclosure.. plenty of fake plants and vines and such for her to climb on with a big piece of drift wood in the middle. I do have a waterfall inside the cage (which will be cleaned regularly).

Now for a few questions.

I've sprayed her plants twice a day for about one minute each, she hasn't really ever licked any of the water up from what I've seen. But she does eat greens (romaine lettuce) twice a day. I've started to mist the lettuce a bit to get her some water that way as she seems to love the greens. She will go over and eat them within a few minutes of them being in her cage. Should I be worried about her not going nuts for water when I mist the plants? I've also been feeding her 6 crickets a day (dusting them once a week) in between "greens" feedings.

She is currently 4 months old and seems to be extremely healthy. She climbs all over her cage (including the top which makes me nervous at times lol) and is active through out the day. Eats her greens and crickets almost immediately, and seems to be doing quite well. I'm just worried that she may become dehydrated at some point...

Any helpful hints would be much appreciated for any aspect of being a new veiled chameleon owner!
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
You can feed her more crickets at 4 months old. They can eat 12-15 a day but she is eating some greens. Six does not seem like enough. What size crickets are they? Also you should be dusting your feeders everyday with Calcium without d3. Not once a week! Twice a month on a calcium with d3 and get yourself a multivitamin to dust with twice a month or so also. What type of lighting you using? You know the forum does not recomend waterfalls. What are you gonna do if your cham poops in it and your not around to clean it at that moment and then she drinks out of it. Bacteria! No one can tell you what to do, just make suggestions. I personally would get yourself a dripper. Much more sanitary!!! Also what is humidity at? That is important to maintain that along with your temps. Just keep an eye on her urates. I am sure you have learned by now that they should be white, not orange. White means hydrated!
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
I would also up the mistings for to about 3-5 minutes. Sometimes they need more stimulation to start drinking. One minute might not be enough.
 

DerekFerReal

New Member
I would also up the mistings for to about 3-5 minutes. Sometimes they need more stimulation to start drinking. One minute might not be enough.
Thanks Carol.. this is exactly why I posted on here. She doesn't seem to thrilled with drinking from the waterfall.. so I believe I will probably stop using that given the health concerns (yes I did read the forum doesn't recommend using them). I'm also going to start misting longer to see if she acts upon it, right now she seems to not like it when i'm misting in there.. she seems to be quite moody about it actually. It could just be something that comes in time and her getting used to it.

Her urates seem to be perfect.. pure white in color.. which makes me think the greens are enough for her drinking. But I'd be reassured if I actually saw her drink some water. A dripper will be the next purchase tomorrow.

As far as lighting the pet store recommended the "mini combo deep dome" fixture, a 75 watt "sun glo" tight beam basking spot lamp, and a 13 watt 5.0 UVB light. This is what I have currently as I went off of what they recommended. Seems to me with the digital thermometer I have in the cage though that I should have two different lighting fixtures (not one with two fixtures attached to eachother). The basking lamp needs to be raised higher from the cage to maintain a 90-95 degree basking spot and about 83 degrees in the rest of the cage.. and I know you want the UV light as close to the enclosure as possible (atleast this is what I've read).

As far as vitamins I've been dusting the crickets with the Exo Terra "Multi-vitamin" with D3 / Calcium. Reading your statement I'm getting that I should be dusting crickets daily with straight calcium.. then twice a month with calcium w/ d3 and the multi vitamin twice a month, correct?

The pet store I bought her from strictly specialized in reptiles, although they don't seem to be the most knowledgeable regarding chameleons it seems.

Last question is about her laying eggs. I've read that she will lose appetite, start roaming around the bottom of her enclosure, etc.. but is there any specific time frame from birth that they could possibly start needing to do this? I've read they reach full sexual maturity from anywhere between 5-7 months, is this correct? Am I also correct in assuming anywhere after 5 months I should be waching for this? Is there a telltale sign she needs to lay eggs?

Thanks again in advance..
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
Ok Derek a couple of things!!!! Unfortunately you were given the wrong info on the temps and lighting and it is critical! A 4 month old veild should have a basking spot of about 80-82. 90-95 is WAY too hot. The overall cage temp should be in the low to mid 70's. you can achieve this by just using a regular housebulb like a 40 watt or so, even a try a 20 to achieve the temp. You canlay the dome right on top of the cage. Just make sure your basking branch or vine is about 8 inches down or so so your cham cannot get burned. Yes, correct, on the supplements! Important also. Most of us use the Reptisun 5.0 UVB tube. I don't know what brand you got. Is it a tube or compact? you may never see your cham drink water. Some are closet drinkers! lol! But if your urates are white then you are good, so don't freak out about that! As far as the egg laying, there are some tell tale signs they are ready to lay. Their coloring may get dark and spotty, they may start traveling up and down the cage looking for a place to dig, they may stop eating also. I am going to post you a great blog to read from one of our members on here named JannB about egg laying and preparation. Great info for you to read! Good luck with everything and welcome to the forums! you came to the right place to get everything in order!!!!.
 
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DerekFerReal

New Member
So it sounds like 81.6 for basking and 73.1 for not basking should work out fine then correct? That's what I'm getting with temps now that i've taken out the larger bulb.

Also is there anywhere I can read online where it says what temps they should receive based on how old they are?
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
Basically the best thing you can do is read here on the forums as much as you can and learn from what you read. Your cage temps can always stay the same in the 70's and and you can raise your basking as they get older about 5 degrees or so. It is pretty much the same temps with the basking being able to be a little higher.. I have found this forum way better than other website. It is all about experience and what works for others and then we all share our information with one another. Whever you have a question, just make a post and it will always be answered by someone.
 
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