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Thread: Anybody here have experience with chameleons?

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    Default Anybody here have experience with chameleons?

    Hey everybody! I've tried joining a chameleon forum for my new jackson's chameleon but for some reason the activation email just hasn't been sent out to me despite my many requests to resend it. I know many people here have lots of different terrarium animals so I was just wondering if anyone could possibly answer this question. When I got my jackson's he crawled right up onto my hand while I put him into his enclosure but now even though he's friendly I just can't coex him onto my hand or arm. I know chameleons don't really like to be handled very often but I've heard that if you don't socialize them they become aggressive and it's very difficult to take them out for cleaning or other cage upkeep. I've heard someone suggest using a stick but he doesn't really care even if I try to nudge him onto it. Here's my real question though. Would it be safe to very gently pick him up by his body for a few seconds and then just place him on my hand so he can cling to it? Thanks so much. If anyone can possibly answer this question I would be grateful.

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    Default Re: Anybody here have experience with chameleons?

    I used to have several chameleons back in the late '90s.

    I think that it is better to coax them into walking/stepping onto you or the stick.
    If you try to pick them up they usually grab onto the branch they are on strongly if they don't want to go. They are very strong, but light boned and fragile.
    Sometimes you can coax them up by putting your hand under their front and trying to get them to place one foot at a time on you.
    Chameleons are subject to stress quite a bit so it's good not to stress them.
    This is my experience.

    Do you hand feed him? This is a good way to associate you with food.
    You can also use the food in one hand to try to get them to crawl on you to get it or to get in a position to get a good aim for it.
    Place your hand under it's front, let them see/notice the food and then move your body/the food in some way so they would need to crawl on you to get it.

    I never had Jackson's but had several others (fischeri, melleri, calyptratus). Each species differed in personality (and nastiness) and individuals in person preference.
    To a healthy chamelon, a cricket or other exiciting/moving food item is as irresistable as a dog treat to a dog. This means you can use it to train/get them used to interaction.

    Getting them young and socializing them from a young age is best.

    Good luck

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    Default Re: Anybody here have experience with chameleons?

    Thanks James! That is a great idea. I'm sure he'd get a real kick out of hand feeding. I'll give it a try

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