Have you ever wished your pet could talk? Well, while they can’t hold conversations, chameleons are unique animals in that they can change their colors based on their mood.
Have you ever wondered what the different color patterns mean? In this article, we will break down various veiled chameleon color variations and identify what they represent in your pet and how they are feeling.
About Veiled Chameleons
Veiled chameleons, or cone-headed chameleons, are a type of lizard originating on the Arabian Peninsula. The veiled chameleon gets its name from a casque protruding from its head, which vaguely resembles a shark fin. The purpose of this casque is to help the chameleon store fat and collect moisture. A long, sticky tongue helps the veiled chameleon capture its prey, which consists primarily of insects and worms. These animals also eat leafy green vegetables.
The veiled chameleon is a popular pet that occasionally escapes or is released into the wild by its human owners. In some areas, such as Hawaii, veiled chameleons are considered to be an invasive species. These lizards can live up to about 8 years in the wild, but they can likely live longer in captivity.
Why Do Veiled Chameleons Change Color?
Like all chameleons, the veiled chameleon can change color. The most common reason why a chameleon might change its color is in order to camouflage itself from predators. However, there are other reasons why your chameleon may change color. Your chameleon’s mood can have a big impact on its physical appearance. Later, we will discuss some of the different veiled chameleon color variations and some of the reasons behind the color changes.
How Do Veiled Chameleons Change Color?
Unlike most other animals that change color, chameleons actually have two layers of skin cells called iridophore cells. Chameleons can actually change the structure of the upper layer of skin cells, which, in turn, changes how they reflect light. When a chameleon is relaxed, the iridophore cells remain close together. When the chameleon becomes excited, however, the cells move farther apart, causing the cells to reflect longer wavelengths of light. This results in a different color being reflected.
Veiled Chameleon Mood Chart & Meanings
Now that you know a little bit more about veiled chameleons and how they change color, let’s discuss what all of the different color variations could mean!
Your veiled chameleon uses a range of colors and patterns to express various moods. In some cases, your chameleon’s color can indicate that they are sick or depressed. Keep an eye on your pet for other signs of illness, and when in doubt, don’t hesitate to bring it to your veterinarian.
Featured Image Credit: _Cathy Keifer,Shutterstock