Vegitation

road8514

New Member
I am new to the chameleon world. I have two baby Veildeds. They are doing great as far as i can tell.
here are my questions.
Can there be to much plant life in the cage?
If there is are they going to have a hard time hunting?
I am also haveing a problem geting my humitity to get any higher then 50%?

Then here are a couple cricket questions

I am useing crickets as the main part of their diets. They are getting dusted with both calcium and multi vit.

The questions in i just ordered a 1000 crickets and alot of them have already seemed to have died.
Is there any special secrets to keeping these bugs?

here are some stats on the chameleon cage.
It is an open air cage that is 18X12 20. I have a 75w heat lamp on top with the 15watt uva and uvb bulb. The cage has a huge hibiscus plant in it. other wise nothing special if i can figure out how to post pics i will.

Stats for the crickets.
the crickets are 1/4 in there were 1000. in a 5.5 gal glass tank with a screen lid. I was feedding them lettus and orange cube cricket full vit and water supliment.

Any and all comments would be greatly appreiciated
thanks
joe
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
You asked..."Can there be to much plant life in the cage?"....I suppose if the cage were so full that they had no place to move around and no place to sit an bask it could be too full. Also...the plants in a chameleon cage IMHO should be well washed (both sides of the leaves) and non-toxic so that if the chameleons or the insects nibble on them, they won't kill the chameleon. I also recommend covering the soil with something so that they won't ingest any soil.

You asked.."If there is are they going to have a hard time hunting?"...yes, they would if it was that crowded with greenery....but also many people worry about small/young chameleons in a big cage having trouble chasing down the food. Exercise is good for them, but too much exercise burns too many calories? I think your cage size is fine.

You said..."I am also haveing a problem geting my humitity to get any higher then 50%"...if you mist them well and make sure that they have lots to drink, with veileds, that shouldn't be a problem.

You said..."I am useing crickets as the main part of their diets. They are getting dusted with both calcium and multi vit."...is the multivitamin's source of vitamin A from a beta carotene source or preformed? Preformed vitamin A can be overdosed. Is the calcium phosphorous-free? Insects' calcium/phosphorous ratio is already out of balance, so we try to balance it by dusting the insects with calcium powder and also by gutloading the insects with a nutritious diet.

You said..."The questions in i just ordered a 1000 crickets and alot of them have already seemed to have died. Is there any special secrets to keeping these bugs?"...are you providing them with places to hide (broken up egg cartons that have not been used for eggs, for example)? Are they warm enough/cool enough?

You said..."the crickets are 1/4 in there were 1000. in a 5.5 gal glass tank with a screen lid. I was feedding them lettus and orange cube cricket full vit and water supliment"...lettuce will provide hydration, but is not a very good diet. I don't like the commercial diets so I feed mine a wide variety of greens (dandelion, kale, collards, endive, parsley, ROMAINE lettuce, etc.) and veggies (squash, sweet potato, carrot, white potato, etc.) I use romaine rather than head lettuce because it has more calcium and other nutrients.

You said..."It is an open air cage that is 18X12 20. I have a 75w heat lamp on top with the 15watt uva and uvb bulb" What brand/uv rating is the UVB light? The wattage of the basking light only needs to be high enough to make the cage/basking temperatures right. For babies, I always keep the temperatures slightly cooler than for the adults since their bodies are small and can heat/cool and dehydrate faster than adults can.

You said..."The cage has a huge hibiscus plant in it"...sounds okay...as long as it was well washed.


Here are some sites that you might like to read. They include articles/pages about baby care, caging, supplements, gutloading etc. There's an e-zine link on the ADCHAM site (lower right) that has lots of information.
http://adcham.com/
http://www.chameleonjournals.com/vet/
http://www.uvguide.co.uk/skintests.htm

Hope this helps!
 

RockinLizard

New Member
kinyonga said:
You said..."The questions in i just ordered a 1000 crickets and alot of them have already seemed to have died. Is there any special secrets to keeping these bugs?"...are you providing them with places to hide (broken up egg cartons that have not been used for eggs, for example)? Are they warm enough/cool enough?



Hope this helps!

I'm just curious, why can't you use egg cartons previously used for eggs?
 

road8514

New Member
thankyou very much..

what are the right temp for the crickets?
Yes there is a ton of places for them to hide with out it being used egg carton.

I am sure i will have more questions.

O yeah should i just use screen to cover the dirt?
 

Jordan

New Member
No, I would not cover the dirt especially with veileds. Rather make sure that there is no perlite (white balls) in the soil or sticks. They can ingest these and can create a blockadge in their digestive tract. Veileds among other chameleons will eat soil from time to time. They will eat dirt sometimes for hydration or if they are seeking certain vitamins (or minerals). I would caution against feeding the plant with chemical fertilizers they could harm your chameleon depending on what they have ingested and how much they have ingested. You can usually make a pretty good blend with organic materials that will acomadate the plants nutritional needs. Re potting with fresh soil blends may be in order from time to time this will ensure that the plant is recieving enough nutrients. These animals will have to be seperated after they get some size to them as they will become aggresive to one another.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
I would think that around 80F would be okay for crickets. They can survive at temperatures slightly lower than that with no problems and slightly higher too.

Rocking lizards...I don't recommend using cartons that were used for eggs because eggs have the possibility of carrying salmonella.

Jordan said..."Veileds among other chameleons will eat soil from time to time. They will eat dirt sometimes for hydration or if they are seeking certain vitamins (or minerals)"...I have never heard of chameleons eating dirt for hydration....but they do seek minerals from it. Even with the perlite removed, soils have been known to cause blockages...so I don't believe in taking the risk. If they are eating the soil then its better to try to provide them with what is missing from their diet with a proper food source IMHO.

Jordan said..."I would caution against feeding the plant with chemical fertilizers they could harm your chameleon depending on what they have ingested and how much they have ingested"...right on! Glad you mentioned it!

As Jordan said, these animals will have to be separated...they will likely fight or at the very least stress each other to the point where one will die...before they are sexually mature for sure. I don't know if you have a male and female or what, but IMHO its not good to breed a female before she is full grown or at least one year old. If you have a female, she will need a place to lay eggs once she is about 6 months old in case she needs to lay eggs. Veiled can lay eggs without ever having been mated.
 

Frank Castle

New Member
road8514 said:
I am new to the chameleon world. I have two baby Veildeds. They are doing great as far as i can tell.

here are some stats on the chameleon cage.
It is an open air cage that is 18X12 20. I have a 75w heat lamp on top with the 15watt uva and uvb bulb. The cage has a huge hibiscus plant in it. other wise nothing special if i can figure out how to post pics i will.

Any and all comments would be greatly appreiciated
thanks
joe

Are you Caging these two together? What are the Sexes? What are the Ages? Are they from the same clutch? These guys will NEED to be seperated if they are older that 4 months old. You are going to run into some problems if you keep them together.

Frank
 

road8514

New Member
For now they are both younger then 4 months, They are from different cluches and I have a male and a female is what i was told.
 

Frank Castle

New Member
Males will have a single bump, called spurs, off their hind legs, right where the feet and ancle meet. Females will not have this. That is one way you can confirm what you have. This can be noticed from birth.

Frank
 

Jordan

New Member
I would still try to seperate them in the near furture. Veileds can sexually mature in as little as three months. I just bought another male about 1.5 months ago. I was observing the cage trying to find the one I wanted. I saw a fair sized male on the basking branch. All the others where in the middle of the cage. I saw another chameleon try to make there way onto the branch he was on and he hissed at the one approaching. He seemed to be the bully of the cage and that is why I bought him. The one I got also had very developed colors. Meaning he was already sexually mature. A good rule of thumb is 3-4 months but if he is starting to show good colors now I would go ahead and do it. He can bully his way into most of the food, the best parts of the cage and in the long run that is not to good for the female. The picture by my name is one taken of my male at 3 months of age and shows what I mean by very developed colors.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
Re: covering the dirt...you can use screen but make sure there are no sharp edges that they can get their tongues or bodies caught on. Plastic canvas (the kind the is used for needlework works too...but the easiest is just to use small stones that are too big for an adult chameleon to ingest.
 

Sean

New Member
Be careful in regards to free range crickets with babies. Crickets not eaten will feed on the soft skin of the tail and around the eyes if not provided a source of food in the enclosure, and even then there is no guarantee. Crickets will munch on chameleons at night while they're sleeping. That's why I prefer to use a shallow container to feed neonates (babies), just pop off one leg from each cricket (with 1/4" crickets this is feasible) so they can't hop out.
 

Jordan

New Member
I would leave the dirt exposed as we have no idea as to why they are actually eating the dirt in the first place. In wild boars it has been discovered that after eating toxic vegation that they will then eat mud to nuetrilize the effects of the toxin. This could be true in reptile to although no research in this field has been done. It is natural for them to do so regardless of why they are doing it so I would leave this option open to them. Just make sure that it is safe mud for them. I must admit watching my chameleon eat mud is a little bizarre.

Not all plants where they come from are non-toxic so this behavior could already be established as instictual.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
My concern with leaving the soil uncovered is that some soils cause impaction....and to me its not worth the risk.

Geophagy (dirt/soil eating) is done by many animals including humans....but the dirts/soils they eat are known by them and shouldn't cause impactions. However, dirt eaten by people can result in the people picking up parasites.
 
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