Picky chameleon?

Hbalandran

New Member
I’m new to chameleon husbandry and I researched for a really long time before deciding to get a chameleon. I decided on an ambilobe panther and felt that best fit me. I got him in august and he was born in March I made sure to get him from a reputable breeder (kamerflage kreations). His name is Gaston and I love him dearly. I have him in an 18x18x36 cage on top of a 4ft tall tv stand in my living room as we don’t have a tv in the living room and spend most our free time in the bedroom watching tv. I mist 3 times a day once at 7 am for 3 min 30 sec, 7pm for 3 min and 30 sec, and at 2 pm for 1 min and 30 sec. I also have a fogger I leave on at night to keep humidity levels up. Since his first shed for some reason he has become incredibly picky with food. I used to feed him 10-15 crickets gutloaded with greens (lettuce, green pepper, and the occasional fruit) now he won’t eat crickets at all. I started to do a mix of superworms and Dubai roaches. Dubai’s I gutload the same as the crickets. I would then do 2 superworms and 2-3 Dubia roaches. He then didn’t care for the dubia roaches. Now he won’t eat the superworms unless I hand feed them to him. I dust each with calcium no d3 for 6 days a week and on sundays I switch between calcium with d3 and a multivitamin. I only get him out to deep clean his cage once a week. I turn his lights on at 11 am and shut them off at 11 pm. I use the Arcadia 6%uvb bar and a 50 watt light from the reptile store. Humidity is around 40% during the day and 70-85% at night I live in Lincoln Nebraska. Am I doing something wrong in my husbandry I’m getting concerned
 

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Hbalandran

New Member
Welcome to,the forum!

Nice looking chameleon you have here!

What's the cage temperature during the day? Basking temperature?

I'd move the cage away from the window if I were you too.
It’s 70 at the bottom 71-74 mid cage and around 79-80 at the basking spot. I don’t have him near a window but I lined the cage with this waterproof plastic they put on sheds and decks to help keep humidity in.
 

Lindasjackson

Chameleon Enthusiast
One thing I do see that needs checking is the fogger you have on at night. Do you make sure the temp is below 67 degrees before turning that on? If the air is warm and moist that’s a recipe for a respiratory infection. The air needs to be cool and moist. Do you clean the fogger at least once a week? They can grow bacteria and mold so should be cleaned weekly. Also I’m wondering since you said he’ll only eat if you hand feed him, maybe he has a tongue injury from the super worms. They can bite if given a chance so maybe your cham got bitten on his tongue or something. I would skip the super worms for now. He will eventually be able to eat them again after he heals. For now just keep offering the Dubia and maybe some bsfl or crickets.they really like a variety of insects, it keeps them from getting tired of the same food over and over. As for gutloading the bugs, lettuce isn’t a nutritious thing to feed them. Try a variety of veggies like squash, sweet potatoe, berries, and whatever greens are listed on the safe foods list for gutloading. I think it’s arugula, beet greens, dandelion greens, and a few others.
 

MissSkittles

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi. Your husbandry looks pretty good. You could increase his basking temp just a couple of degrees. I try to keep my boys around 82-84 (85 max) and think just getting a stronger basking bulb will do the trick for you. The added warmth will boost his metabolism a bit so he digests his food better and faster. It’s also possible he’s telling you that you can start to reduce his feedings a bit. You could also try to add something new to his diet, like silkworms, bsfl, hornworms, etc. As @Lindasjackson mentioned, he could have gotten a bite from a superworm, which will just need time to heal. Hornworms can also bite plus they have super sticky feet and it has happened that your cham’s tongue could get pulled from the hornworm not letting go of whatever it’s on. Those are usually best to hand feed. I should also mention that panthers can be more finicky eaters and sometimes you just have to be more stubborn than they are. Lastly, it’s always a great idea for a veterinary wellness visit and take a fresh fecal for parasites testing. Kammerflage has a great reputation and truly care about their animals, but crickets have been known to carry some parasites.
 

Hbalandran

New Member
One thing I do see that needs checking is the fogger you have on at night. Do you make sure the temp is below 67 degrees before turning that on? If the air is warm and moist that’s a recipe for a respiratory infection. The air needs to be cool and moist. Do you clean the fogger at least once a week? They can grow bacteria and mold so should be cleaned weekly. Also I’m wondering since you said he’ll only eat if you hand feed him, maybe he has a tongue injury from the super worms. They can bite if given a chance so maybe your cham got bitten on his tongue or something. I would skip the super worms for now. He will eventually be able to eat them again after he heals. For now just keep offering the Dubia and maybe some bsfl or crickets.they really like a variety of insects, it keeps them from getting tired of the same food over and over. As for gutloading the bugs, lettuce isn’t a nutritious thing to feed them. Try a variety of veggies like squash, sweet potatoe, berries, and whatever greens are listed on the safe foods list for gutloading. I think it’s arugula, beet greens, dandelion greens, and a few others.
Thank you so much! I will definitely be cleaning the fogger tube tonight!
 

Hbalandran

New Member
Hi. Your husbandry looks pretty good. You could increase his basking temp just a couple of degrees. I try to keep my boys around 82-84 (85 max) and think just getting a stronger basking bulb will do the trick for you. The added warmth will boost his metabolism a bit so he digests his food better and faster. It’s also possible he’s telling you that you can start to reduce his feedings a bit. You could also try to add something new to his diet, like silkworms, bsfl, hornworms, etc. As @Lindasjackson mentioned, he could have gotten a bite from a superworm, which will just need time to heal. Hornworms can also bite plus they have super sticky feet and it has happened that your cham’s tongue could get pulled from the hornworm not letting go of whatever it’s on. Those are usually best to hand feed. I should also mention that panthers can be more finicky eaters and sometimes you just have to be more stubborn than they are. Lastly, it’s always a great idea for a veterinary wellness visit and take a fresh fecal for parasites testing. Kammerflage has a great reputation and truly care about their animals, but crickets have been known to carry some parasites.
Okay thank you so much! I will look for a 75 watt bulb and see if that helps. I’ll keep a lookout for fresh poops and bring one in to be checked.
 

Hbalandran

New Member
Update: I think he doesn’t care for his feeding cup. He gobbled up 4-5 small Dubias last night when I hand fed them to him so I will be getting a new feeder along with more variety of foods and better gutloading foods. I will still taking be taking his poop as well to the vet. His fogging tube has been cleaned while making sure it’s only being used with low temps and I’m getting a 75 watt bulb tomorrow. Thank you for all the help!
 
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