Rhampholeon temporalis - The Pint Sized Bully

When a resolute young fellow steps up to the great bully, the world, and takes him boldly by the beard,
he is often surprised to find it comes off in his hand,
and that it was only tied on to scare away the timid adventurers.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 - 1882)





I felt that the metaphor in the quote suited this species of chameleon. At only about 3" long it has the attitude of an elephant. Of course when the going gets too rough and the bully is bullied, he doesn't hesitate to role up into a ball and play dead (akinesia). A bark worse than a bite indeed.

Here are several photos of a couple Males of some of the Temporalis that I aquired some time ago. All are doing well and growing. They have not been treated for parasites, and have shown no problems otherwise. I may enter one of these into the contest. All comments and questions are invited and appreciated. I'll get aound to taking some photos of the females soon, but they are a bit more passive and shy than the Males.

Also, I invite anyone with Temporalis to post their own Temporalis photos in this thread. Hopefully others have them as I am having the time of my chamlife working with them.
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Great pictures, Will! Love the quote. Leaf chams ARE tough! I had a baby brev valiantly attack my finger the other day when I removed him from the top of a sibling he decided to sleep on.

Thanks Heika! How are the little bullies doing? I love how there are any number of branches in there to sleep on, but they choose to be a nuisance and crowed themselves.

Still waiting on my Brevicaudatus. Another 20 days or so. I poked around the englosure but found zip, nada silche. I wasnt too thurough, but whatever. Hopefully someday Ill just notice a newcomer. The tank has been the same for the last 7 months almost- so technically a large nuber of eggs should have been laid. Ill poke around in some different places tommorow.
They are doing great.. getting big. Or, at least, big in keeping with the species. I have seen a couple females with dirt on their faces over the last few days, but haven't had the time to poke around yet. I am going to be doing major renovations on the bottom cage either today or tomorrow, so I will probably unbury a few more.

I have cut down on the amount I have been feeding them. I am now feeding 3 insects per cham every other day. It is too soon to see if it is working. Hopefully, the little egg laying machines will slow down.

Hmmm, I bleive that I may be feeding them too little to be breeding as often as you have described yours to be. I guess Ill start raising the amount of feeders given.
Hey Will,

I'm looking at getting a pair of these from a LPS and was wondering if you have any idea how to sex them. Also ... I'm thinking that 2 or 3 of these little guys would be fine in a 20 gal. with screen top, forest floor setup with thin branched plants or vines and a low UV fluorescent light.

Any suggestions that you have would be appreciated.

Thanks ... Dyesub Dave. :D
The photos above are all of males. Females have a skinny and diminished tail. You can't mestake two adults from each other. As seen in photos 2 and 4, you can very obviously see the hemipenes within the tail.

3 in a 20 should work if planted very densly. These are slightly larger than Brevicadautus, so a 30 gallon or 25 long would be better. In my opinon people do not plant their pygmy terrariums dense enough.
Here's one of our little guys. Unfortunately, we have 2 males. They live in a 55gal tank, along with our beardeds. We weren't even trying to get temporalis. We ordered 4 bearded chams, and 2 temporalis showed up with 2 beardeds. I was thinking it was one, but now remember it was 2. The breeder sent us 2 more beardeds to make up for it. We thought about getting females for the temporalis males, but everyone seems to get along pretty well in there now and I wouldn't want to upset the status quo. These guys have been living in harmony since September. The other temporalis is sitting under a curled leaf, stalking prey.

Will, mine don't look anything like yours. Are your males very young? I think mine looked like that when they were younger. This is an unretouched photo, taken today with my camera on macro.

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OK ... Thanks Will. If you get a chance could you post a pic of a female - if you have any - for comparison?? Also ... do you know of any good resources on the net for care and breeding of these guys?

Wow Gesang ... that guy is beautiful. The ones I saw were just brown. They said that they were getting 3 more in by the end of the week. I'm going to check for the pointy nose the next time I go to make sure that they've at least told me the correct species.

BTW - Is it OK to use a fogger to keep the humidity up with these chams? Assuming of course that the fogger enclosure is screened off so that nothing can fall in!

Dyesub Dave. :D
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Some younger photos, most taken on the day of arrival, or shortly afterwards:




I came in late one night to find this little guy asleep on a leaf stem, with his little "arms" folded under his chin, and his full round belly, so contented. Just couldn't resist carefully lifting him out and taking this photo.

Thank you for the kind words. I fine mist them by hand, and the humidity stays around 70, with spikes at misting time, and occasionally it may drop down to 65. We live in the great northwest, in a temperate rain forest area, with rain almost everyday throughout most of the year, so it stays humid here. I try to keep their temps around 72-75 during the day and 65-68 at night.
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I was just wondering if it's better to get 2 females to 1 male or if 1 of each is fine. Do they ever show aggression towards each other? I was looking for that Stump Tailed Chameleons - Miniature Dragons book but man it's fairly expensive.

Anybody know of any online resources??

Thanks ... Dyesub Dave. :D
OK ... I'm thinking of getting the 2 pygmy chams that the LPS currently has this weekend. I took a good look at them today. The only difference that I can see is that one is a bit smaller than the other. The larger one is slightly thicker at the base of the tail and has a slightly longer tail.

Would you guess that the smaller one is a female or just a younger male. Their colours looked to be an almost identical brown.

If I pick them up I will post some pics and just hope that I have a pair!!

Thanks ... Dyesub Dave. :D
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