Preparing for our new baby ambanja panther!

Rst_Cham

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hello! I'm new to forum though been reading up for months, there's so much information here it's incredible! We are anxiously awaiting our new baby ambanja panther chameleon from @Matt Vanilla Gorilla this week! Some quick background on us, my son and I will be sharing chameleon care responsibilities. My son is 14 years old and very mature, gentle, and responsible, not your typical teen. He helps me a lot already with my frog care.

I have reptile and amphibian experience, but it's been years since I had chameleons. But in the past I've had a female panther, a male Jackson's, and a beautiful breeding pair of veileds from which I successfully raised 3 clutches of babies. But that was many many years ago when I lived in San Diego, and I kept my chameleons in large enclosures outdoors. Now I'm in Denver so care here will be much different. We do plan to setup an outdoor area (for sunny summer days).

I'm looking forward to sharing this experience with my son who loves animals as much as I do. He's already done research on his own as well. But, since it's been so long since I've had chameleons, I would love some feedback on our setup from you experts; I want to make sure everything looks good before we get our baby this week!

Chameleon Info:
Your Chameleon - baby ambanja panther chameleon, male, from Matt at Nuts Over Chameleons!

Handling - we plan to gently handle him if temperament allows,hopefully!

Feeding - will do crickets, Dubia roaches (if he likes them), BSFL, blue bottle fly spikes, and silkworms (though silkworms are out of stock everywhere I check right now.) Will also do superworms, hornworms, wax worms (as treats), and BSFs when he is older. Gutloading insects with fresh fruit and veggies, plus dry feed made with recipes from this site. We will be cup feeding, since I know our enclosure is large for a baby, plus we are hoping to hand feed as well.

Supplements - will be using supplement schedule from Matt's care sheet

Watering - we have a mist king installed with two nozzles and using RO water (I have a heater in the reservoir and just got an RO system installed). Denver is so dry, so the misting system runs for 3 minutes every two hours during the day to keep humidity up, plus two 5 minutes sessions as well. It does dry out in between mistings, though the humidity is staying up in the correct range 60-80% range.

Cage Info:
Cage Type
- Reptibreeze XL 2'x2'x4' screen cage. Top has Plexiglass sheets over top screen EXCEPT where lights are, and back has 2 Exo Terra 24x24 backgrounds stacked and attached to back panel, plus two 18x48 Plexiglas sheets are installed with velcro over the left and right side panels to help contain humidity, since Denver is very dry. Cage is set on Reptibreeze stand, with a bucket on shelf underneath for drainage. The bottom of Cage is replaced with a XL Reptibreeze Substrate Tray (no substrate), and I've installed two small screened drains that line up over bucket below. I've tested it and drainage works very well. I realize this is a very big enclosure for a baby so if it's not working, I'll remove the large plant and section off half of the enclosure so that it's half as big, but since the plant is helping with the humidity, I'm hopeful I can keep it in. We are planning to cup feed.

Lighting - Zoomed 24" T5 HO fixture with Arcadia 6% bulb for UVB, plus basking light with 75 watt bulb on dimmer, raised up off top of screen. 12 hrs on 12 hours off on timers.

Temperature - basking is 82*, floor of enclosure goes to 70. I have one digital thermometer and one digital thermometer/hygrometer probes installed in cage. I just ordered an infra red temp gun as well.

Humidity - I have mist king going off every two hours for 3 minutes during the day, plus two longer 5 minute sessions. It's so dry here that it is drying out in between. I'm planning on loosely wrapping the cage in a fabric drape at night after the last misting to contain humidity overnight, otherwise it would drop into the 35% range.

Plants - Large, live Schefflera arboricola in bottom half of enclosure (plant has been washed and repotted in organic soil, with screen and river rocks placed on top so he doesn't accidentally eat soil), branches from outside that have been properly sterilized, plus fake plants and vines in top half

Placement- bedroom, so low traffic, not near any vents or fans

Location - Denver, Colorado

Current Problem - just want feedback before we get our little baby, everything look/sound OK? I'm really very nervous and also excited after months of learning and preparing!


Thanks!
 

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Rst_Cham

Chameleon Enthusiast
Did you drill holes through the substrate tray and the shelf? How does the water get to the bucket? Just curious sorry! IT looks fantastic!

Hi, the stand just has a ledge that the enclosure sits on, so the only real shelf is the bottom one holding the bucket. I did drill holes in the substrate tray and I hot glued screen to the underside of the tray below the holes so that no stray feeders can escape. I hope that makes sense!
 
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