Introduction to Chameleon

The Chameleon is a very popular type of Lizard due to the fact that it has the ability to change colors based on their mood. This also allows them to blend into the surroundings for safety. Other factors influence color too including mating season and even the temperature around them.

Class Reptilia
Order Squamata
Suborder Lacertilia
Infraorder Iguania
Family Chamaeleonidae

Chameleon Description

The Chameleon has a body that is wide and appears to be puffed up. They have a head that is narrow so you can see their shoulders from the front. They have wide eyes on the sides of the head and a tongue that is wide and long. They move from side to side when they walk with a gait that appears to be quite awkward.

Many people don’t know that the Chameleon is equipped with a prehensile tail. This allows them to grab things and to hold onto items with the tail. The body of this Lizard is well build for climbing and for walking along the thin branches in the trees. Some sub species are only 1.3 inch long and others are up to 24 inches in length.

Chameleon Distribution

Even when you are familiar with the various locations where the Chameleon you may not see them. They do blend in exceptionally well to their surroundings. As a result you will have to try to focus on a given area and be patient to wait to see if you can make out the shape of one of them.

There are more than 160 sub species of the Chameleon and they have a huge diversity when it comes to where they are located. Some of those common areas include Florida, California, Hawaii, Asia, Sri Lanka, Spain, Madagascar, and Portugal.

This species of Lizard seems to do the very best in warmer locations. However, their habitat spans from the rain forests to the dry desserts. They are very adaptable Lizards and with so many sub species you will find them in a wide spectrum of locations out there in the wild.

Chameleon Facts

Chameleon – Family Chamaeleonidae

Chameleon Behavior

The Chameleon tends to be a timid type of Lizard and they will retreat rather than fight when they can. They are often kept as pets due to their calm nature and the fact that they can amazingly change colors. However, they can be tough to care for because they need the right balance of food, heat, and places to climb in order to really thrive. They are believed to be a very intelligent species of Lizard.

Chameleon Feeding

The small and medium sized Chameleons consume crickets, grasshoppers, locusts, and an array of different insects. Those that are larger in size consume birds and even other small Lizards. They also consume plants because they need more vitamins and minerals to stay healthy.

Panther Chameleon - Furcifer pardalis

Walking Chameleon – Lizard Facts and Information

Chameleon Reproduction

The mating season for the Chameleon can vary based on the time of year and the location of them. The sub species that is being evaluated will also influence that period of time. All Chameleons lay eggs and that typically will occur in four weeks or less after mating takes place.

The eggs can be in clutches ranging from 4 eggs to 100 eggs depending on species. The female will create a nest that is several inches under the surface of the soil or sand. This allows the eggs to have warmth and to be as protected as possible from predators. Her job is done at that point and she will leave them there.

The eggs will hatch from 4 to 12 month after mating occurs (depending on species). They have to get out of the shells on their own, find food, find shelter, and avoid predators. There is often a large mortality rate of the young Chameleons.


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