Questipn about a diy enclousure


New Member
ğŸ¦Ž Hello !! I am so glad I found this group..... My Family and I are fixing to buy our first chameleon. I've been researching like crazy but there seems to be so many contradictions. I have already learned alot by the threads here.

We are wanting to build an enclouser but I have some questions I was hoping ya'll could help me with before my husband gets started lol.

My husband wants to use hardware cloth ( pictured below) instead of screen mesh. The mesh seams like it could get a hole poked in it super easy. Do ya'll think this would be ok?

we were thinking a wide board around the bottom sides to keep in the crickets ?

also is there alternative to paper and paper towels in the bottom ? I know that would be the easy clean up but im not a huge fan of that

I'm so sorry for the long post


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Chameleon Enthusiast
So for your first question about using metal mesh, that is exactly what I used so it would be fine. It is actually better in my opinion because with the screen mesh, they can get their claws stuck and ripped out. Not sure about the second question but for the last one, don't put anything down there but a tray to catch water. I use warm water and a little bit of vinegar about once a week to clean it because it does get kind of gross down there and you dont want mold.


Chameleon Enthusiast
Your going to want to search the forum for build threads. There are many of them.

Keep in mind your wanting to use aluminum window screening not fiber glass. Bugs can chew through fiberglass. All wood components have to be sealed as well. You can use something like flex seal or a water based polyurethane. The issue with the metal mesh your thinking about using is bugs can get out. You should not be feeding only crickets so any flying insects are going to get out... roaches will get out and superworms as well. Those you really do not want in your house eating your furniture.
AND the big issue is that your UVB penetration will not be reduced the same so to know your distances to basking you will need to buy a solarmeter 6.5 to ensure your levels are correct and the cham is not being overexposed.

At the top of this page there are pinned threads. a few on enclosures that will help with ideas and 1 on drainage systems.


Chameleon Enthusiast
Thank ya'll all so much ! I will look at those threads. And we will change to the matterial ya'll have reccommend. :) when yall started out did it feel over whelmed ?
Yes, Very.... I am a little over 2 years in. After the first 6 months I felt more secure in my knowledge. But this is something that continues to grow and expand. I consider myself to have a good understanding of everything now. But I still worry about all the details. I do not know if that every gets easier just different.

They are hard animals to keep. Critical thinking is a must with them. Having a reptile vet is a must as well. They are expensive.
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