The Mayotte Chameleon or Furcifer Polleni


The Mayotte Chameleon, aptly named for its abundance on Mayotte Island of the Comorros, West of Madagascar, is one of the more versatile species of chameleons. An introduced species, it firmly established itself on the island and can live in most environments (Wikipedia). Its scientific name is Furcifer Polleni after naturalist Francois P.L. Pollen (1842-1886). There is not much information to describe this species other than that it reaches up to 20 cm in length and by photographs appear to have a prehensile tail. It has varying shades of light to dark green, a white band along the flanks, a rather small casque and a small rostral appendage, and a small dorsal crest made of tubercules.

As mentioned, it is abundant on the island of Mayotte of the Comorros and is found in most environments such as forests, woodlands, plantations, arid lands, and even in urban areas. They are found up to an altitude of 459 meters. This species was also introduced on the island of Anjouan (IUCN Redlist). Its range is the entire island of Mayotte covering an area of 376.5 square kilometers.

Furcifer Polleni’s abundance and versatility has earned it the status of least concern in the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN Redlist). It is protected by law on the island of Mayotte (Wikipedia) but there is little information of it being exported (IUCN Redlist).

References:

IUCN Redlist – http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/199758/0
Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayotte_chameleon
Reptile database – http://reptile-database.reptarium.cz/species?genus=Furcifer&species=polleni
iNaturalist – http://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/33006-Furcifer-polleni

 

Images:

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Warty Chameleon Furcifer Verrucosus

The Warty Chameleon or Furcifer Verrucosus


The Warty Chameleon, scientifically known as Furcifer Verrucosus is an abundant and rather distinctive chameleon species. It is also among the larger species of chameleons with males reaching lengths of up to 22 inches. It’s also called the Giant Spiny Chameleon despite the smaller females reaching only up to 8 inches. There are two subspecies for Furcifer Verrucosus which are Furcifer V. Verrucosus and Furcifer V. Semicristasus. This species has a close resemblance to the Malagasy Giant Chameleon or Furcifer Oustaleti.

It has a large raised casque and a small crest from the snout up to between its eyes (Wikipedia). It also has a pronounced spiny crest along its back and low crests along its sides, throat and belly. This species primary colors are either brown or gray with dark blotches. It also has a white band along the side of its body up to the tip of the mouth.

This species is found in abundance across Southern and Western Madagascar (IUCN Redlist) even in degraded habitats and human populated areas at lower than 120 meters above sea level. This terrestrial species actually favors arid disturbed land.

It has a large range of over 211,000 square kilometers with over 60 individuals per hectare. This high population earns this species a status of least concern. This status also allows an annual export quota of 2000 animals for the pet trade.

 

References:

1) Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Furcifer_verrucosus
2) Encyclopedia of life – http://eol.org/pages/795473/details
3) ARKIVE – http://www.arkive.org/warty-chameleon/furcifer-verrucosus/factsheet

 

Images:

1) Main image supplied by Dr M Sandrine

 

Petter’s Chameleon or Furcifer Petteri


Petter’s Chameleon, scientifically known as Furcifer Petteri is a medium sized chameleon that can grow between 16 to 18 centimeters (Wikipedia). Its primary color is a dark shade of green with lateral white stripes on the sides of its body. It also has rostral appendages and white lips as part of its distinguishing features. It was previously classified as the subspecies Chameleo Willsii Peterri in 1966 but has earned a status as a separate species in 1994.

This species is found at the northern tip of Madagascar at the Ankarana Reserve and in fragmented populations in Montague des Francais, Antsolipa Forest and Shahfary Forest. Some have also been found at the Lokobe Reserve in the Western island of Nosy Be (Herpetology Notes Volume 7). This arboreal species has a range of only 11,000 square kilometers or 4,200 square miles. It can be found in dry humid forests from 120 meters to 850 meters above sea level (IUCN Redlist).

Its limited range, fragmented population and gradually declining habitat has earned it a vulnerable status in the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN Redlist). Its vulnerability is due to its intolerance of its limited range, fragmented populations and continued human encroachment to its habitat. Exports f this species is banned due to its status.

References:
1) Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Petter%27s_chameleon
2) IUCN Redlist – http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/172950/0
3) Herpetology Notes Volume 7 – http://www.herpetologynotes.seh-herpetology.org/Volume7_PDFs/Roberts_HerpetologyNotes_volume7_pp149-151.pdf

 

Images:

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Ambiky Chameleon or Furcifer Tuzetae

Ambiky Chameleon or Furcifer Tuzetae

Not much is known about Furcifer Tuzetae otherwise known as the Ambiky Chameleon. It is named after Biologist Odette Tuzet (1906-1976) of the University of Paris Laboratory in the Mediterranean (Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles). It’s listed in the IUCN Redlist as data deficient as there has only been one collected specimen (Wikipedia). The specimen was captured at Andrenalamivola in southwestern Madagascar in an arboreal setting and is assumed to live in large trees along the Mangoky River (Encyclopedia of Life).  Since only one specimen has been collected, there is insufficient data as to the extent of the population and is thus presumed to be very rare and in decline. There is no record of trade for this species and any trade will automatically be controlled under CITES Appendix II.

References:

1) IUCN Redlist – http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/176320/0
2) Encyclopedia of Life – http://eol.org/pages/795472/overview
3) Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Furcifer_tuzetae
4) Reptile Database – http://reptile-database.reptarium.cz/species?genus=Furcifer&species=tuzetae
5) 
Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles – https://books.google.com.ph/books?

 

Images:

Main image supplied by Caroline Ward

 

Rhinoceros Chameleon Furcifer Rhinoceratus

Rhinoceros Chameleon or Furcifer Rhinoceratus


The Rhinoceros Chameleon, scientifically named Furcifer Rhinoceratus is one of the most distinctive of the genus furcifer. It’s named for its prominent scaly horn-like nose (Wikipedia). Both male and female have this feature except it’s more prominent in males (Arkive). It has a small casque and some small spines along the throat and chin. Both male and female also has a spiny dorsal crest. The males can be grey or brown in color with dark brown or black stripes. There is also a white line along the sides of its body. When gravid, the females turn a beautiful neon purple color (Arkive). Males of this species can grow up to 27 cm, while females are much smaller at 12 cm.

Rhinoceros Chameleon Furcifer Rhinoceratus 1This species is endemic to Madagascar and can be found along the West to southwest parts of the island (IUCN). It had an estimated range of over 13,700 kilometers. This terrestrial species can be found in dry forests but is unknown to survive in degraded habitats.

Despite its large range, human encroachment and its fragmented population has earned it a vulnerable status in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Redlist. It is also listed in CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) Appendix II making trade of Furcifer Rhinoceratus controlled (Arkive).

References:

1) Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhinoceros_chameleon
2) Arkive.Org – http://www.arkive.org/rhinoceros-chameleon/furcifer-rhinoceratus/
3) IUCN Redlist – http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/172758/0

Images:

Main image supplied by Dr M Sandrine
Sub image supplied by Dr M Sandrine

 

Giant Carpet Chameleon or Furcifer Major

Furcifer Major or Giant Carpet Chameleon is or was a subspecies of Furcifer lateralis (IUCN). It was recognized as a true species in 2012. It shares many traits of furcifer lateralis including the bright colors, its ability to change said colors as well as the white stripe on the side of the body. Aside from the size, it has a larger head casque (Reptile Database). Males can grow larger and live longer (2-5 years) than females.

Furcifer Major found on the island of Madagascar mostly in the arid south (iNaturalist) among its smaller cousins Furcifer lateralis lateralis. It has a very wide distribution of over 130,000 sq.km. It is one of the most flexible species in terms of habitat. They can be found anywhere at altitudes of 600 to 1200 meters above sea level where there is adequate shade and humidity and access to direct sunlight.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) lists Furcifer major as a species of least concern (LC) as the species population is very stable. It is one of the species very much visible in the pet trade and one of the legally exported species from the island with an annual export quota of 2000 individuals. Due to the recent reclassification, that number does not differentiate between furcifer lateralis and furcifer major.

References:
1) IUCN Redlist – http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/42696174/0
2) iNaturalist.org – http://www.inaturalist.org/projects/chameleons-of-madagascar/assessments/608-furcifer-major
3) Reptile Database – http://reptile-database.reptarium.cz/species?genus=Furcifer&species=major
4) Terrarium.pl – http://www.terrarium.pl/t/species/_/furcifer-major-r383

 

Images:

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Carpet Chameleon or Furcifer Lateralis

The carpet chameleon scientifically known as furcifer lateralis is an attractive and common chameleon species. It’s brightly colored akin to a carpet where it gets its name. It’s also known as the while-lined chameleon from the noticeable white stripe on each side of the body from head to tail. They also have several ocelli or circle patterns along the white stripe (Chameleon News). Furcifer lateralis is another example of a true chameleon because they can change color depending on their mood and environment and females can display more vibrant colors when gravid (Chameleon News). The base color for males is generally green (Animal Diversity Web). Carpet chameleons can grow from 17 to 25 centimeters in length. Carpet chameleons reach adulthood within the first three months and can live for up to three years.

This species is found on the island of Madagascar except for the northern areas (IUCN). It is one of the most flexible species in terms of habitat. They can be found anywhere at altitudes of 600 to 1200 meters above sea level where there is adequate shade and humidity and access to direct sunlight. They can be found in savannah and grassland areas in trees and shrubs. They can also be found in human habitats in people’s gardens so long as the conditions are right (Animal Diversity Web).

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) lists furcifer lateralis as a species of least concern (LC) as the species population is very stable. It is one of the species very much visible in the pet trade and one of the legally exported species from the island. Species from the wild however have a higher mortality rate from ones that are bred in captivity.

 

References:
1) Chameleons Online – http://www.chameleonnews.com/06MayStanford.html
2) Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carpet_chameleon
3) Animal Diversity Web – http://animaldiversity.org/accounts/Furcifer_lateralis/
4) IUCN Redlist – http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/42696174/0

Images:

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Bradypodion Carpenteri or Carpenter’s Chameleon


Bradypodion Carpenteri or Kinyongia Carpenteri is a small species of chameleon that occurs in the mountainous highland region between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Its common English name is the Carpenter’s Chameleon in honor of the specimen’s collector Dr. G.D. Hale Carpenter (iNaturalist). Its genus designation has been moved two times from Chameleo to Bradypodion to Kinyongia.

This species can grow up to 30 cm. They have large casques, curved parietal crest and bifurcated canthus rostralis (on males). Little is known about this species and it’s not known to be in the captive market (IUCN Redlist).

 

References:

1) iNaturalist – www.inaturalist.org/taxa/32971
2) Wikipedia – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carpenter%27s_chameleon
3) Reptile Database – reptile-database.reptarium.cz/species?genus=Kinyongia&species=carpenteri
4) IUCN Redlist – www.iucnredlistassessments.org/about/forum/east_africa_chameleons/32971-2/
5) Chamowners Web – chamownersweb.net/chamfamily/bradypodion/bradypodion_carpenteri.htm
6) Chameleon Forums – www.chameleonforums.com/kinyongia-carpenteri-pictures-35017/index2.html

Images:

1) Do you have an image of this species? Would you like to see your image on our website with your name credited?
Email us info@mychameleononline.com

Bradypodion Dracomontanum or Drakensberg Dwarf Chameleon

Bradypodion Dracomontanum or Drakensberg Dwarf Chameleon

Bradypodion Dracomontanum or the Drakensberg dwarf chameleon is a small species of chameleon which occurs in South Africa in the Drakensberg mountain range in Kwazulu Natal and the Eastern Free State. Its Latin name Bradypodion means slow-footed and Dracomontanum refers to its home in the Drakensberg (dragon) mountains. It can grow up to 14 centimeters (Arkive) and lives in the bushes of alpine grasslands and small patches of forest at around 1500 meters above sea level.

Its distinguishing features include a prehensile tail, light brown skin, and blue-green tuberclues on ots flanks and upper limbs. Like many in the Bradypodion species, it has an erratic gait. It can be seen on tops of bushes during the day and hides within them during the night.

This species is listed in the CITES II database meaning that trade is limited. According to the IUCN Redlist of endangered species, it is of ‘least concern’ in since its population has not been fully assessed and its range is more than 5500 sq.km. It may be composed of two subspecies and a common name has been proposed for the bright-green individuals (emerald dwarf chameleon) in the southern part of its range (Wikipedia). 

References:

1) Arkive – www.arkive.org/drakensberg-dwarf-chameleon/bradypodion-dracomontanum/
2) Wikipedia – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drakensberg_dwarf_chameleon
3) IUCN Redlist – www.iucnredlist.org/details/176291/0
4) CITES Appendix II – cites.org/eng/app/appendices.php

Images:

1) Main image supplied by Jan Sohler

 

Bradypodion Caffer or Transkei Dwarf Chameleon


Bradypodion Caffer is a species of chameleon belonging to the genus Bradypodion (slow footed). Bradypodions are also collectively known as South African Dwarf Chameleons which places them south of the African continent. This species however is so far found only in lowland forests of Port St. Johns in the Pondoland region of South Africa within a radius of 1950 sq. km. (Encyclopedia of Life).

Bradypodion Caffer is identifiable through its pale brown or brown coloring with white mottling. Its casque points backwards and up and large flattened spines on the dorsal crest. This species is also ovoviparous or live-bearing (Chameleon Forums). Bradypodion Caffer is known by two other names: Transkei Dwarf Chameleon or Pondo Dwarf Chameleon (Wikipedia). It is currently classified as endangered in the IUCN Redlist of Endangered Species because its range is less than 5000 sq. km. Its listing in CITES Appendix II also makes trade of this species illegal. 

References:

1) Chameleon Forums – www.chameleonforums.com/species/showtaxa.php?taxa=18
2) Wikipedia – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transkei_dwarf_chameleon
3) Encyclopedia of Life – eol.org/pages/454031/details

Images:

1) Do you have an image of this species? Would you like to see your image on our website with your name credited?
Email us info@mychameleononline.com