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Panther Chameleon

Furcifer (Chamaeleo) pardalis

  • Family: Chamaeleonidae
  • Adult Size: Average 1½ feet in length.
  • Range: Endemic to the island of Madagascar.
  • Habitat: Tropical forests.
  • Captive Lifespan: 5 to 8 Years
  • Dangerous:
  • Care Level: Intermediate


Panther chameleons are arboreal lizards, which are known to be colorful, especially the males. Colors can range from blue and green to red and orange. Panther chameleons change colors depending on temperature and levels of stress and excitement.

Panther chameleons should be housed in screened enclosures measuring at least 3 feet tall by 2 feet square. Enclosures need to be furnished with a tree or brush, as large as the cage will hold. The cage should be misted several times a day to maintain humidity and to keep the panther chameleon hydrated. Daytime temperatures should remain at 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and nighttime temperature can slide into the 60s. Use full-spectrum UV lighting over the cage. Providing an outdoor enclosure also greatly benefits the panther chameleon.

The average adult panther chameleon will consume five to seven insects each day. Crickets, mealworms, fruit flies, grasshoppers, cockroaches and silk worms are all readily accepted. Make sure to dust the feeder insects with a vitamin and mineral supplement prior to offering them to a panther chameleon. Gut loading the insects also provides needed vitamins.

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