Chameleon Cages Review:
It is not difficult to fashion your own chameleon cages out of simple and inexpensive materials. Custom built chameleon cages give owners a great sense of achievement when built with their own hands.
Like chameleon cages that you buy from online sources or pet stores, chameleon cages built on your own should also consider safety factors and the comfort of your chameleon. Different chameleon species have different cage requirements which you should keep in mind when building your own chameleon cages.
For example, desert species chameleons such as Chamaeleo oustaleti or C. verrucosus are able to withstand much hotter temperatures. In fact, they enjoy basking in the heat of up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Chameleon cages for these desert species should have a strong heating lamp to give them the required basking environment. However, other species of chameleons will die from such a temperature before they can find any shade.
To build a basic chameleon cage, you first need a roll of hardware cloth. If possible, choose the type which is plastic coated for better comfort on your chameleon’s feet. In case of any nose rubbing behaviour, the plastic coating also protects your chameleon from serious injuries.
Based on the measurements you have estimated for your chameleon cages, cut the right size of hardware cloth from the main roll. You can sit on the unrolled portion or use its own weight to hold down the roll while cutting and measuring.
When you have cut the cloth, simply roll the hardware cloth into a tube and place one end into a plastic water saucer for a snug fit. The two ends of the hardware cloth should overlap about 3 inches when forming the tube. The water saucer will be used on both ends of the cage to shape the top and base of the chameleon cages.
The ends of the chameleon cages should be secured with the top and bottom of the tube with a wire or zip tie. Fasten the zip ties along the whole edge until no gaps appear. Use additional fasteners to hold down the overlapping hardware cloth along the length of the chameleon cages. Do not leave any gaps in any part of the cage since these gaps can be exploited by your chameleon or other insects to get in or out of the cage.
After securing all the gaps in your chameleon cages and holding the hardware cloth in place, you can now seal off the chameleon cages with silicone. Line the edges of the cage liberally with silicone, do this for both the insides and outsides of the chameleon cages. The silicone will cover any sharp edges at the seams and protect your chameleons from brushing on them and getting injured.
This form of design is known as a tube chameleon cage. Tube chameleon cages are quick to design, making it a favorite among self made chameleon cages. It is also easy to clean and does not take up a lot of space in the house.
Tube chameleon cages are very durable despite their simple design. They can last for years without repair. If the silicone comes off or if the top or base plate breaks, you can simply attach a new plate or reapply silicone in the same way that you built the chameleon cage.
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