Everybody thinks that chameleons are cool, even if you don’t like reptiles, any animal that can change colors, has a tongue twice as long as it’s body and can rotate it’s eyes 360 degrees holds a certain level of awesomeness that just can’t be denied. Here are some things that you probably didn’t know about natures reptilian masqueraders.
Due to their ability to change colors depending upon their surroundings, chameleons are one of natures most interesting species. Some may be surprised to know that chameleons come in a variety of sizes and types. Ranging from 2 inches to 30 inches in length, this is one reptile that can rely make you look twice. Chameleons not only have the ability to change colors, they also have eyes that are capable of looking in different directions at the same time. This may sound a bit creepy, but it is one of the survival skills that chameleons possess to keep them safe in the wild. In recent years the idea of keeping chameleons as pets has gained in popularity, making chameleons a hot topic in the animal industry.
Fun chameleon facts
- Out of the 160 different species of chameleons, over half of them are native to the island of Madagascar. The rest take up habitat in Africa, Asia and some have been introduced into American states like Florida, California and Hawaii.
- Chameleons can change their colors, thanks to the pigment cells under the outer layers of their skin. Depending on the signals received from their brains, chameleons either enlarge or shrink their pigment cells to allow for more or less color Most chameleons have the ability to change into a variety of colors, depending on their surroundings and situation. Chameleons change their colors according to their mood and temperature. Also, color changing is a way for chameleons to communicate with one another, making them one of the most colorful animals.
- Because chameleons can look in two directions at once, giving them a 360 degree field of vision. Chameleons are the only animal that has upper and lower eyelids that are connected, allowing only for a small pinhole view from each eye. Because of this, they can see everything around them. This makes hunting and hiding both much easier for chameleons. Once the prey has been found, chameleons can focus both eyes on the same object, giving them a sharp, stereoscopic view up to 10 meters.
- Once chameleons have located their prey with their super-human eyes, they use their ballistic, projectile tongues to catch it. It is believed that chameleons typically have tongues that are twice as long as their bodies, but it has been recently found that mailer chameleons have larger tongues than their larger chameleon counterparts. They use the suction cup created at the end of their tongues to catch prey in as little as .07 seconds. Making them fast movers in the animal kingdom.
- Despite their excellent vision, chameleons can not hear much that goes on around them. Like members of the snake family, chameleons lack an outer or middle ear. This does not mean, however that chameleons are deaf. Chameleons can detect certain frequencies in the 200-600 Hz range.
- Ultraviolet light is conducive to better chameleon behavior. Chameleons in captivity have shown more responsiveness and social behavior when placed in conditions with ultraviolet light. Also, because of the positive effect ultraviolet light has on the pineal gland, chameleons in ultraviolet lighting conditions are more likely to mate and reproduce.
Interesting Chameleon Facts Right Well There is More
While they may seem like the most awesome animals on the planet, Chameleons like to be left alone and really shouldn’t be kept as pets. Read on for more information.
Chameleons are one of natures most intriguing creatures, they have abilities and physical qualities that no other creatures on earth possess, but do they make good pets? For the right person, yes they do. Chameleons are a type of reptile that can change their color, loos in two directions at once, and catch prey in approximately .07 seconds with their super powerful tongues. After having said that, who wouldn’t want a chameleon? There are several important facts to consider, however, before you rush out and buy one.
Things to consider before buying a chameleon
Chameleons are definitely not something that should be bought on an impulse. Yes, it may seem like an amazing idea when you see one in the pet store, and the salesperson may try to sell you on the idea, but some research is in order prior to your purchase. While chameleons can make great part, they are definitely not for everyone. They require a great deal of care and attention…but not too much personal attention. Chameleons are reclusive creatures and they do not like to be handled more than is necessary. In other words, don’t give one as a gift to a small child.
Chameleons require just the right environment to live and thrive happily. It may come as a surprise, but the more colorful they are and the more they change their colors, the more anxious they are. This is why research is so important, a novice may want to see the colors and think that it is a good thing, while they really are causing a great deal of distress to their new pet. Stress and anxiety can cause chameleons to become sick and even lead to their demise.
Overall chameleons do not make bad pets, it just takes the right person to successfully keep one healthy and happy. If you have the time to dedicate to their care, and don’t expect your chameleon cuddle with you then you may be a good candidate to own one, but if you are looking for a pet thats a bit more social this is likely not a good fit. Remember, you should always research a pet before you buy one. A pet is a big commitment and you want to always ensure that both you and your pet are happy.