Setting up my enclosure/lights issue

Peperoni

Member
Hello!
I'm in the process of building a bioactive enclosure for a male Veiled cham which i don't have yet.
I ordered already the arcadia T5HO pro kit (6%), but for now i bought an exo terra Solar Glo 125w (the pet store guy told me that its the best alternative since my terrarium is 90*45*90 cm). The only issue is that the temperature in the basking spot is too high, when i measure with a temp gun pointed on the leaf that is closer to the top it's usually 33-35C. I tried getting the lamp further away but it doesnt really make a difference. I don't want to fry the poor guy. Apart from that the ambient temps are on spot! If anyone has any idea on what to do or has had mercury vapor lamp please share your wisdom :)
153092500_239618914547290_756874527119136117_n.jpg
 

GrayMadder

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hello!
I'm in the process of building a bioactive enclosure for a male Veiled cham which i don't have yet.
I ordered already the arcadia T5HO pro kit (6%), but for now i bought an exo terra Solar Glo 125w (the pet store guy told me that its the best alternative since my terrarium is 90*45*90 cm). The only issue is that the temperature in the basking spot is too high, when i measure with a temp gun pointed on the leaf that is closer to the top it's usually 33-35C. I tried getting the lamp further away but it doesnt really make a difference. I don't want to fry the poor guy. Apart from that the ambient temps are on spot! If anyone has any idea on what to do or has had mercury vapor lamp please share your wisdom :)View attachment 293363
Try using a lower wattage on your bulb. That usually will help, what are you using now for your basking bulb?

I did a lot of experiments w lighting before I got my cham. 🤣🤣 The lower wattage helped me!
 

Peperoni

Member
Try using a lower wattage on your bulb. That usually will help, what are you using now for your basking bulb?
It's a 2 in 1 bulb, it emits heat too. That means that i cant lower the branch for basking more because he would not be getting his UV.
 

GrayMadder

Chameleon Enthusiast
It's a 2 in 1 bulb, it emits heat too. That means that i cant lower the branch for basking more because he would not be getting his UV.
Wait your basking bulb and uvb are the same bulb? You will need to change this. I'm a little uncertain with this brand, I'm going to tag some people for some help.

Also, I just reread 125w is super high for basking bulb. You need two separate bulbs for uvb and basking.

@ERKleRose @Beman @kinyonga , have any of you heard of this?
 

Peperoni

Member
Try using a lower wattage on your bulb. That usually will help, what are you using now for your basking bulb?

I did a lot of experiments w lighting before I got my cham. 🤣🤣 The lower wattage helped me!
Also I've already spent 600 euros on the setup and i still haven't bought the cham (and some other stuff i need), he will end up being the least expensive one from the whole thing! :p That's why i'm trying to make do with what i have, otherwise i would just get a new lamp
 

GrayMadder

Chameleon Enthusiast
Also I've already spent 600 euros on the setup and i still haven't bought the cham (and some other stuff i need), he will end up being the least expensive one from the whole thing! :p That's why i'm trying to make do with what i have, otherwise i would just get a new lamp
I get it, beleive me. Lol. These guys are expensive! And definitely happy you're doing all this before your cham arrives. 😁
 

GrayMadder

Chameleon Enthusiast
I think you should look into different lighting. The 125w is a bit dangerous imo. You can look at getting normal incandescent light bulbs for basking and they aren't expensive.
When does your arcadia fixture come in? I would definitely wait on that fixture and buy a reg light bulb for basking before bringing your cham home.
 

Peperoni

Member
I think you should look into different lighting. The 125w is a bit dangerous imo. You can look at getting normal incandescent light bulbs for basking and they aren't expensive.
When does your arcadia fixture come in? I would definitely wait on that fixture and buy a reg light bulb for basking before bringing your cham home.
They said in 2-3 weeks. So i can buy normal bulbs for basking and keep the one i have now but put it even further away, or wait altogether for the arcadia ones? Thing is, they can probably keep him for a week because i have reserved him. If it's too dangerous though i will just buy another uvb light plus the normal basking one until the arcadia one comes.
 

GrayMadder

Chameleon Enthusiast
They said in 2-3 weeks. So i can buy normal bulbs for basking and keep the one i have now but put it even further away, or wait altogether for the arcadia ones? Thing is, they can probably keep him for a week because i have reserved him. If it's too dangerous though i will just buy another uvb light plus the normal basking one until the arcadia one comes.
So with my breeder, I explained the situation that I had lights ordered and they held onto him for me until my lights came in. I sent them the shipping date I had, and they understood and held him until I got everything and felt comfortable with his enclosure. They also answered a bunch of questions I had about my enclosure and proper set up. I def would talk to the breeder you put a reserve on your cham from and explain the situation.
If they are reputable, more than likely they will work with you. 😁 just a thought, otherwise it's looking like you will need some new lighting for your set up.
 

Peperoni

Member
You said..."That's why i'm trying to make do with what i have, otherwise i would just get a new lamp"... So if you use that lighting and it ends up killing the chameleon what will you have gained?
Absolutely nothing, that is why instead of rolling with it i decided to ask here for help and any ideas of how and if i can use what i bought. Im sorry that from what i said you thought that i care more about not spending more money than keeping my chameleon healthy, i can only imagine that you must see that mindset pretty often :/
 

Peperoni

Member
So with my breeder, I explained the situation that I had lights ordered and they held onto him for me until my lights came in. I sent them the shipping date I had, and they understood and held him until I got everything and felt comfortable with his enclosure. They also answered a bunch of questions I had about my enclosure and proper set up. I def would talk to the breeder you put a reserve on your cham from and explain the situation.
If they are reputable, more than likely they will work with you. 😁 just a thought, otherwise it's looking like you will need some new lighting for your set up.
Unfortunately in Greece its kind of weird because there are no breeders and you can get them only from specialty pet stores... the people there are super helpful though and i did plan on asking them on Monday. They were the ones who reassured me that the light is perfectly safe even though i had doubts because i never heard of it and thought that mv bulbs are not to be messed with :p From what youve told me though it seems like i definitely need to get new lights, just to be on the safe side!
 
They said in 2-3 weeks. So i can buy normal bulbs for basking and keep the one i have now but put it even further away, or wait altogether for the arcadia ones? Thing is, they can probably keep him for a week because i have reserved him. If it's too dangerous though i will just buy another uvb light plus the normal basking one until the arcadia one comes.
I would try a lower watt basking bulb i use a 75 watt and get consistent basking temps of between 80-85 degrees Fahrenheit
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
With the mercury vapor lights, they HAVE to be used with a Solarmeter 6.5 (to measure accurate UVI levels) and preferably only with massive cages or free-range set-ups, and mounted at a 45* angle! With normal cages, it’s extremely hard to get the proper temps and proper UVI levels together, which is why they aren’t recommended. If you can get your new boy to be kept at the store a little longer and just wait for the Arcadia UVB to come in, it’ll be preferred. You would also use that with a plain white light incandescent bulb for your UVB and basking bulbs (one of each and separate bulbs and fixtures). How cold is it in Greece right now, could you keep him outside until his bulb comes in if the pet store can’t hold him?
 
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Peperoni

Member
With the mercury vapor lights, they HAVE to be used with a Solarmeter 6.5 (to measure accurate UVI levels) and preferably only with massive cages or free-range set-ups, and mounted at a 45* angle! With normal cages, it’s extremely hard to get the proper temps and proper UVI levels together, which is why they aren’t recommended. If you can get your new boy to be kept at the store a little longer and just wait for the Arcadia UVB to come in, it’ll be preferred. You would also use that with a plain white light incandescent bulb for your UVB and basking bulbs (one of each and separate bulbs and fixtures). How cold is it in Greece right now, could you keep him outside until his bulb comes in if the pet store can’t hold him?
The weather is very unpredictable unfortunately right now, three days ago it snowed and was -1C and now its 15 C during daytime, so thats definitely not an option... I will just get some other lights, use the MV for free range when he's older, and use the arcadia ones when they come. I wouldn't be able to use the MV anyway during summer because of the very high temperatures here, plus i have a glass terrarium, not a screen one. At least i found a safe use for the MVs in the future so they're not going to go completely to waste
Thanks a lot :)
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
So yes Mercury Vapor bulbs can be very dangerous with chams specifically if your putting them on an enclosure. Everything @ERKleRose has already said...

I have seen some pretty awful things in the forum with these bulbs being used. Including a chameleon that had a thick consistent peeling of the skin due to the high UV output of the bulb basically radiating and burning the skin daily. I have also seen chams die... Then there are the other medical issues that have not been studied before related to over exposure.

But basically the highest UVI they see in the wild is a 12-13 but they always go into the thick of the trees to get away from this UVI level and heat. The Mercury Vapor can actually product 3to 4 times that uvi... So your looking at levels of 35 and above.

This is why they are only used with a solarmeter 6.5. And yes they can be used if you have a solarmeter 6.5 but your looking at $250 US dollars for this piece of equipment. And you have to position them high focusing on the right UVI level at basking with a coordinating temp that works for your species and gender.

So the hobby itself as a whole recommends either a single fixture T5HO fixture with a 5.0 or 6% bulb (basking below this bulb sitting on the screen would be 9 inches for the correct 3 UVI level) or if you can not get access to that then you need a single fixture T8 with a 10.0 or 12% bulb (basking below this bulb sitting on the screen would be 7-8 inches for the correct 3 UVI level).

Veileds we know can handle up to a 6 uvi level without health complications. But the standard UVI for most species is a 3 UVI at basking.
 

frabjousday

Member
I ordered already the arcadia T5HO pro kit (6%), but for now i bought an exo terra Solar Glo 125w (the pet store guy told me that its the best alternative since my terrarium is 90*45*90 cm). The only issue is that the temperature in the basking spot is too high, when i measure with a temp gun pointed on the leaf that is closer to the top it's usually 33-35C. I tried getting the lamp further away but it doesnt really make a difference. I don't want to fry the poor guy. Apart from that the ambient temps are on spot! If anyone has any idea on what to do or has had mercury vapor lamp please share your wisdom :)
153092500_239618914547290_756874527119136117_n.jpg
May I ask where you bought the Arcadia T5 HO? I have had a really difficult time finding one in stock anywhere.
 
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