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:

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Knysna Dwarf Chameleon Bradypodion Damaranum

Bradypodion Damaranum or Knysna Dwarf Chameleon


Bradypodion Damaranum or the Knysna Dwarf Chameleon is one of the most colorful species of chameleon. The base colors or males range from brilliant green-blue to green. This species can be identified by a patch of scale-less skin behind the front legs which can be orange or yellow in color. Their head ridges are also brilliantly colored in a mixture of yellow, blue and black. Like many chameleons, it has a well-developed casque that points backward. This species also has large conical scales from the dorsal crest down to the tail (Chameleons Onlne Ezine). 

Wild Knysna Dwarf Chameleon 2 ( Bradypodion Damaranum)Bradypodion is a moderately sized genus and the Damaranum is one of the larger species which can grow up to seven inches. Regardless of the scientific name, this species is not found on Damaraland or Namibia but is found in the dense wet forests of Knysna, Western Cape Province of South Africa (Wikipedia). It can adapt to captive environments similar to its native habitat. This is a rare species with limited range thus it is listed in CITES Appendix II (Biodiversity.org) so trade is illegal though there are some kept in Europe (Chameleons Onlne Ezine). Its IUCN conservation status however is yet to be evaluated.

 

References:

1) Chameleons Online E-zine – www.chameleonnews.com/10JulDeckersAnderson.html
2) Wikipedia – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knysna_dwarf_chameleon
3) Biodiversity.org – www.biodiversity.org.na/taxondisplay.php?nr=2706

Images:

1) Main image supplied by Francois Strydom
2) Sub image supplied by Francois Strydom

Bradypodion Fischeri or Giant Fischer’s Chameleon


Bradypodion Fischeri or rather Kinyongia Fischeri is a horned chameleon species native to the Nguu and Nguru as well as the Usambara mountains in Tanzania Africa (Wikipedia). Its English name is Fischer’s Chameleon. It is a medium-size species which can grow from 30 to 32 cm (Camaleones.es). Its distinguishing feature is the large rostral scale which can grow up to 2cm from its mouth. They also have unevenly distributed conical scales on their backs. Males can have various colors like various shades of green, yellow, gray, brown and black.

Captive specimens are described to be very active and can live for seven years or more. Based on several Pet Websites (Replilica.de, Luckyreptile), this species is subject to limited trading. However, as of May2014, CITES lists this species as of ‘urgent concern’. Kinyongia Matschiei, Kinyongia Vosseleri, and Kinyongia Multituberculata used to be considered as subspecies for Kinyongia Fischeri but have been elevated as separate species (Reptile Database / Wikipedia) though they are still referred to as Fischer’s Chameleons. True Kinyongia Fischeri are actually rare.

 

References:

1) Camaleones.es – www.camaleones.es/fefischeri.htm
2) Wikipedia – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fischer%27s_Chameleon
3) Reptilica – www.reptilica.de/product_info.php/product/Bradypodion-fischeri-Fischer-s-Chamaeleon
4) Reptile Database – reptile-database.reptarium.cz/species?genus=Kinyongia&species=fischeri
5) CITES – www.cites.org/sites/default/files/eng/com/ac/27/wg/E-AC27-WG-01.pdf
Gwannon.com – www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=7&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CEoQFjAG&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.gwannon.com%2Fspecies%2FBradypodion-fischeri%2Fpdf&ei=g04DVOj8OovU8gXqooDgAw&usg=AFQjCNFlxW6xZNnNVSwIPSOW5qDxHWyajg&sig2=LdQ8TfcHIyxu1RNM7a4WwQ

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Bradypodion Excubitor or Mt. Kenya Hornless Chameleon


Bradypodion Excubitor or rather Kinyongia Excubitor is a medium-size species of chameleon native to Kenya, thus its English name is the Mt. Kenya Hornless Chameleon (Bio-Ken Snake Farm). There is not much data on this species but based on internet images, its size is approximately 10cm. It is generally green, the head is without horns with a slightly raised casque at the back of its head and no gular nor ventral crest. It also has a dorsal crest where the scales gradually reduce in size towards the tail (Chameleon Forums).

Like the Kinyongia Carpenteri, the species was formerly assigned to Bradypodion but was later reassigned to Kinyongia (Wikipedia). This species live in montane forests in the mountains of Kenya.

There is currently no data regarding population and IUCN has no assessment (IUCN Redlist). There are also no CITES quotas for trade specified though there are rumors of illegal trade and harvesting for pets. This species is also rumored to be harvested as a cure for AIDS (iNaturalist).

References:

1) Bio-Ken Snake Farm – www.bio-ken.com/index.php/reptiles-and-amphibians/lizards/chameleons/item/mt-kenya-hornless-chameleon
2) Chameleon Forums – www.chameleonforums.com/species/showtaxa.php?taxa=162
3) iNaturalist – www.inaturalist.org/projects/chameleons-of-east-africa/assessments/593-kinyongia-excubitor

4) IUCN Redlist – www.iucnredlistassessments.org/about/forum/east_africa_chameleons/32974-2/

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Jackson Chameleon perched

Triceros Jacksonii or Jacksons Chameleon


Jackson’s chameleon, also known as Triceros jacksonii, is a specie of chameleons most diverse in Madagascar and also found in Europe, Africa, Comoro Islands, India and Sri Lanka (François Le Berre, 2000). They are native to humid and cool regions and inhabit abundantly at elevations above 3000m. However, in 1971, Jackson’s chameleons (Chamaleo (Triceros) jacksonii xantholophus) were inadvertently inhabited on Oahu, Hawaii, and as of today have an established existence throughout the stretch of the Hawaiian Islands.


C Jacksonii species bear easily identifiable features. Typical male Jackson’s chameleon are green and can grow up to a maximum of 10-12 inches in length whereas females are found to be of 7-8 inches on an average (Bartlett, 2001).

 

Jackson Chameleon
Their body consists of a long, prehensile tail constituting for half its length. Males generally have 3 horns protruding from their forehead while females never have horns. Jackson’s chameleons have a prominent dorsal (under) ridge with a very rugged pattern of saw-tooth shaped scales and they do not have a gular crest (Bartlett, 2001).

Although capable of making noticeable colour changes, all subspecies of the Jackson’s chameleon are found to be in shades of green. A narrow to wide, light dorsolateral line, either entire or broken into dashes is generally present. A bright green colour is displayed when the males are involved in territorial fights. The newborns possess a dark-barred tan or are light grey coloured.

Jackson’s chameleons were unarguably the first chameleons to have been successfully held captive and they make up for good pets with an average life span of above 5 years with a few living up to 10 years. Generally, the males are found to outlive the females slightly. But they need to be well taken care of when bred. They need large areas for breeding when in captivity as they are native to forests. The suitable temperature gradient is from 65-80 F with humidity levels ranging between 60-80 %( Fry, Michael).

References:

1) Bartlett, R. D., and Patricia Bartlett. Jackson’s and Veiled Chameleons. Hauppauge, NY: Barron’s Educational Series, 2001. Print.
2) Berre, François Le, R. D. Bartlett, Patricia Bartlett, and François Le Berre. 
The Chameleon Handbook. Hauppauge, NY: Barron’s, 2000. Print.
3) Michael Fry. “Caring for your Jackson’s Chameleon.

Images:

1) Main image supplied by Chicago John
2) Sub images supplied by Chicago John      

 

Namaqua Desert Chameleon

Chamaeleo Namaquensis or Namaqua Desert Chameleon

Chamaeleo Namaquensis or the Namaqua desert chameleon is a special type of chameleon able to live in the inhospitable desert regions of Namibia, South Africa and Angola. It is the only species of chameleon able to live in such a habitat. (Mercury) Unlike most chameleons, it is a terrestrial type meaning it spends much of its time on the ground.

Chamaeleo Namaquensis is usually grey or brown. It has dark triangles beneath the dorsal crest and red or yellow stripes on the throat. It has a large head and unlike arboreal type chameleons has a short tail (
ARKive). Its body is adapted to handle the desert heat. It is able to dig in the sand or use the burrows of other animals to cool itself. It can also straighten its legs to lift its body from the hot sand like other desert lizards.
namaqua chameleon 1

 

Namaqua Chameleon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This species has a wide distribution and abundant population in the deserts and semi-deserts of Namibia, Angola and South Africa. It has a status of Least Concern in the IUCN Redlist. There are currently no major threats except for its capture for the pet trade. Trade however is regulated because Chamaeleo Namaquensis is listed in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species Appendix (CITES Appendix II). They are able to reproduce quickly as they mate three times a year. The females can lay up to 22 eggs per clutch which hatch after 100 days. They can reach sexual maturity in five to seven months.


 

References:

1) Mercury NIE – www.mercurynie.com.au/documents/ChameleoncopyrightMercurynewspaperHobart.pdf
2) ARKive – www.arkive.org/namaqua-chameleon/chamaeleo-namaquensis/
3) IUCN Redlist – www.iucnredlist.org/details/176311/0
4) CITES Appendix II – cites.org/eng/app/appendices.php

 

Images:

1) Main image supplied by Caroline Granycome
2) Sub images supplied by CowYeow