Pets can be not only fluffy cats, friendly dogs, and talkative parrots.
Some people keep in their homes an exotic reptile – chameleon. This unusual pet requires special conditions of detention, proper care, and a special chameleon diet, which has a certain value for the reptile organism.
In this article we will consider the peculiarity of the chameleon diet, what kind of food they can and should not be given, in what quantity, the peculiarity of the drinking regime.
Chameleon diet in wildlife
In natural conditions, chameleons feed on various insects, chicks, small lizards, and other mammals.
The main part of the daily diet is insects – spiders, crickets, worms, flies, caterpillars, etc. Smart animals do not eat stinging and poisonous insects. Even if the reptile is very hungry, it will not hunt for a potentially dangerous victim.
Fruits of trees and green leaves make up a small part of the diet.
Chameleon diet at home
Exotic lizards living at home need a special diet. Reptiles can not eat the usual foods typical for the human table. Even though a certain part of the menu is still vegetables and fruits, the priority food for a chameleon is the food of animal origin.
Animal products for chameleons are insects. The most useful food is crickets and locusts.
What other insects can be fed chameleon:
- fodder cockroaches;
Superworm, wax moth larvae, and flour worms can be given 3-4 times a month (frequent feeding of these insects may cause liver failure).
Chameleons of large species can be fed to small mice. Such treatment should not be given to the pet for more than 2 times a month.
Vegetable food and vitamin supplements
Homemade lizards can be fed with plant food – green leaves, vegetables, fruits of some species.
What can be given to chameleon:
- green salad leaves;
- melons and watermelons;
- tangerines, oranges;
Special mineral and vitamin supplements are created for home reptiles, which are necessary to ensure a complete diet and maintain physical health.
Useful vitamins for chameleons:
- Calcium is a very important element for the body of reptiles. It strengthens bones, improves the health of teeth. If it is deficient, it develops a metabolic bone disease (rickets).
- Phosphorus is a useful component that regulates the correct balance of vitamins and minerals in the body. It should be consumed in the right ratio with calcium.
- Vitamin D3 – strengthens the immune system, maintains normal levels of calcium and phosphorus in the lizard body.
- Vitamin A – ensures the normal functioning of the visual organs, supports bone health and immunity.
Even the most useful vitamins and minerals in excess can provoke serious health problems. Excess phosphorus promotes heart and kidney failure. High levels of vitamin A lead to nervous system disorders and liver problems. Vitamin D3 in large quantities harms muscles and nerves.
The optimal solution – the purchase of special food with the right ratio of useful trace elements.
Chameleon feeding methods
The fruit is served to home lizards in small pieces with tweezers or with hands. You can also hang the product on the branches of terrarium plants.
When feeding with tweezers, be as careful as possible. A lizard can snatch food and damage your teeth. To avoid this, buy a special chameleon feeding tweezers with soft tips.
Feed and vitamin and mineral supplements can be placed in a trough in the terrarium. It is better to choose dishes made of plastic or glass. To prevent living insects from getting out of the trough, oil the walls of the dishes.
How often do you feed a chameleon?
Young lizards are fed daily, 2 times a day. Adult chameleons eat once every two days. It is desirable to feed the pet on a mode, serve food at the same time.
Features of drinking regime
In the natural habitat, chameleons receive water from droplets of rain or dew on plants. To provide a home lizard with drinking water, it is recommended to spray the water on the plants in the terrarium with a sprayer. This should be done up to 4 times a day, but you should control the moisture level in the terrarium. The optimal figure is 60-90%. To prevent the growth of pathogenic bacteria, you should ensure good ventilation of the terrarium.
Some owners buy mini waterfalls or fountains for their pets, which provide water to the home lizard and create a beautiful view in the terrarium.