What is bio-active? Simply put it is an enclosure that contains the full cycle of life. This means that it will include all parts necessary to grow and thrive as a micro biotope. There are isopods, springtails and other microfauna living in the soil. They eat or break down any waste or decaying mater into beneficial soil for the plants. This results in a self cleaning, growing environment.
The answer is No. It is not necessary to have a bio-active enclosure to raise a healthy chameleon. It is a choice, having to do as much with style as health. There are arguments on both sides and a number of pros and cons for each of them. For a first time keeper, it may be easier to have a bare bottom enclosure with live potted plants. This way more focus can be put into learning about the animals needs before adding any additional cage residents. Lets get the basics down first.
When we decide to follow nature it is important to properly identify not just the region, but the biotope in which the animal lives. Keep in mind that the climate of the city they are found is not necessary the climate in which they thrive, chameleons will find ideal microclimates in the lush forests and tree canopies. They will bask in the morning sun to warm their bodies and continue on to hunting. Then they will settle into a comfortable lounging area, where they will opportunistically snatch up any morsel that comes within range. As night falls, the humidity rises and the fog sets in, hydrating the chameleon thru their delicate lungs. With sunrise they wake to a moist world with dissipating clouds of fog and a layer of morning dew.
For Chamaeleo calyptratus, the Yemen or Veiled chameleon there is often a misconception of where they come from. See here where the actually live. It is pretty safe to say that 75% if not all Yemen Chameleons in captivity were collected from this region.
From Petr Nečas , The original importer of the Yemen Chameleon.
Wild Footage, not easy too find.
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