Jackson’s chameleons were named after an ornithologist and former governor of Kenya, Frederick Jackson, rather than a scientist named Jackson. These chameleons were originally found in East Africa, but have since spread to California, Hawaii, and even Florida. Young Jackson’s chameleons are brownish, changing to a brighter green color around the age of four or five months.
Males are more vibrantly colored, with blue or yellow patterns. Because the males of the species have little brown horns over their eyes and one on the nose, they are frequently referred to as three-horned chameleons.
Chameleons should never be maintained in a terrarium made of glass. Fine metal or fiberglass mesh is not suggested since they require the airflow supplied by a mesh enclosure. Because chameleons tend to ascend high above the ground, vertical space is crucial. When the weather is warm enough, an outside cage can be used as long as overheating is avoided.
In order to prevent bacterial and mold growth, the cage must be kept clean. Cleaning is made easier by lining the cage with paper towels or newspaper. Some keepers use dirt (no vermiculite or perlite) or peat moss, although these materials are more difficult to maintain clean and dry. Potted plants can be placed on a basic paper substrate to make cleaning easier while still allowing live plants to be present in the cage.
Use no wood chips or any other substrate that could be swallowed and cause blockages. Give your chameleon plenty of non-toxic plants and branches to climb on. Ficus trees are frequently used in chameleon housing, although they must be utilized with caution because the sap can be unpleasant. Pothos, hibiscus, and dracaena are some more plants you could try.
A daytime temperature gradient of around 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit should be supplied for Jackson’s chameleons, with a basking place up to 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
They should have a temperature decrease of around 10 to 15 degrees Fahrenheit at night, so heating at night may not be necessary provided the temperature in your home does not go below 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. To avoid burns, use a basking or incandescent light in a reflector or a ceramic heat source, both of which should be put outside of the cage.
Chameleons require a full-spectrum ultraviolet (UVA/UVB) light source, therefore choose a decent bulb. Turn on the UV light for 10 to 12 hours a day. Keep in mind that these bulbs must be replaced every six months. Remember that these bulbs need to be replaced every six months or based on the manufacturer’s recommendations.
When the temperatures are right, chameleons benefit from spending time outdoors in natural sunshine, but be cautious of overheating as Jackson’s chameleons do not survive temperatures beyond 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius).
Jackson’s chameleons require humidity levels ranging from 50 to 80 percent. This can be achieved by sprinkling the plants in the enclosure on a regular basis (at least twice daily) and by using a drip or misting system. Chameleons rarely drink from a water bowl, but they will lap up droplets of water from plants; misting and a drip system are alternative sources of water.
Jackson’s chameleons are territorial and should be kept separately. Handling is upsetting for them, thus they, like other chameleons, are best suited to being watched rather than handled as pets. Jackson’s chameleons are insectivores. Live gut-loaded crickets, wax worms, butter worms, cockroaches, house flies, or small snails are the finest options. The idea is to feed a diverse diet of high-quality, nutrient-dense insects. Feed your chameleons no more than five to seven insects per feeding. Each insect should be no bigger than the distance between the chameleon’s eyes.
Senegal chameleons, like many reptiles, are prone to several different types of health issues.
- Respiratory infections: Usually a result of temperatures being too low in an enclosure or the chameleon being exposed to a draft or drastic change in temperature.
- Stress-related ailments: A lack of appetite and respiratory infections may be a cause of stress.
- Calcium deficiency: Low calcium levels can be due to a lack of UVB lighting or too little calcium in the diet.
- Vitamin A deficiency: Low vitamin A levels are usually the result of a poor diet.
- Stomatitis: Mouth rot
- Intestinal parasites: Worms and protozoans are common problems for chameleons.
- Metabolic bone disease: This is usually what happens when a chameleon can’t absorb calcium properly. This painful condition weakens the animal’s bones so that its legs appear wobbly. It also will have a poor appetite and may appear lethargic.
Want more from Us? You can follow Our Instagram Page for daily fun facts!