Jackson Chameleon Care Sheet
Jackson chameleon is definitely not an easy
lizard to care for, but, if you’ve tried your
hand at a Veiled already, consider this Jackson
step #2. One rule for Chameleon care: They are
NOT a snuggly toy. Keep your hands off your
chameleon. Think of it as a living Picasso on
your wall. Handling is the number one killer for
chameleons. Keep it in a quiet stress free room.
That means no TV, no radio, no dog, no kids, no
main traffic. A chameleon lives only 5 to 7
years. A handled chameleon lives 1 year.
(common names Jackson's Chameleon or
Three-horned Chameleon) is an African chameleon
belonging to the chameleon family (Chamaeleonidae).
These are small to medium sized chameleons.
Their adult size is 12 inches (30 cm) in total
length. They have a saw-tooth shaped dorsal
ridge. There is no gullar crest. They attain
sexual maturity after five months. The lifespan
is variable, with males generally living longer
than females. Males develop the 3 horns.
Animal – A chameleon
is an isolated animal. It cannot tolerate cage
mates. Someone will die. House your chameleon
singly. Even out of sight of another chameleon
or other reptile.
Cage – A Jackson
chameleon needs an all mesh cage, they need this
to enable a constant flow of fresh air. The cage
should be taller than it is wide, with a base no
smaller than 3' x 3'. You should look to
purchase a cage that is at least 5 feet tall.
Chameleons like to climb, so an abundance of
branches or vines should be offered in their
cage. Fake plants or real plants should be
placed strategically to offer various hiding
places. A somewhat deep tub of sand (roughly 7
inches) should be provided for female veiled
chameleons to potentially lay her eggs in. If
this isn't provided, a female could possibly get
eggbound, which sometimes results in death.
A chameleon needs a full spectrum of lighting.
They need a UVB bulb to produce vitamin D3,
which enables them to absorb calcium. You need
to produce a temperature gradient, whereby one
end of the cage is hotter than the other. Do
this by heating one far corner of the
chameleon's cage. The cooler side of the cage
can fall to 78°, while the hotter side of the
cage needs a basking spot in the range of 95° to
100°. A mercury vapor bulb produces both heat
and UVB light, but can be considerably more
Food – A chameleon
eats mainly insects. Crickets are the usual
choice, with silkworms, butterworms, roaches and
the occasional wax worm. The worms can be hand
fed, while the crickets and roaches should be
allowed to roam free to give the chameleon a
chance for exercise and the thrill of the hunt.
These lizards also need a vitamin and calcium
supplement. Babies and juveniles should have
their insects dusted once a day, while adults
can get by on a once or twice a week dusting.
Insects should be offered on a daily basis. Care
needs to be taken to make sure you gut load
(feed nutritious fruits and vegetables) your
insects 24 hours to 48 hours before you feed
them to your chameleon. Make sure your
chameleon's food is considerably smaller than
your pet lizard's mouth; this prevents choking.
You need to make an effort to provide a variety
of both insects. Water is a little bit more
difficult, as chameleons will not drink from a
water dish. A drip system on the top of the cage
is the best method to providing water to your
pet chameleon. You need to simulate dew and or
raindrops, as this is a chameleon's natural way
of drinking water. In addition to a drip system,
the cage needs to be misted at least twice a
day. There is a digital misting system that is
inexpensive that will mist your cage when you
want, and for how long you want.