Today we explore poisonous plants and pesticides. Be aware of the plants going into your caged make the right choices. This episode gives you the foundation to understand how poisonous plants and pesticides affect us as chameleon keepers.
There are a number of lists of plants which are poisonous. This lists are usually taken from the lists for dogs and cats. There are also lists for birds and horses. You will find lists on reptile sites, but digging deeper into the origins you’ll find they are copied from the dog and cat lists. Obviously, applying this to chameleons includes a leap of logic. If anyone knows of a poison list of ornamental plants that was actually tested on reptiles please let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org! Until then, we have all unofficially decided to adhere to the standard list for our favorite warm blooded pets. I like the following list because it allows the search to tell you if a certain plant is poisonous for a dog, cat, or horse.
Of course, we have the most information on what plants are poisonous to us humans. Once again, it is a leap of logic to apply this list to chameleons, but here it is anyways! The danger really isn’t so much that these plants may end up not being poisonous to chameleons, but that a plant that is not poisonous to us (or dogs and cats) may end up being poisonous to chameleons. But, until we start seeing a rash of cases of poisoning in chameleons whatever we are doing is a subset of what works for a chameleon so there is no reason to stop using the lists we are using. It is just important that we realize what it is we are doing and understand that the information we have and are using is not definitive.
A great tutorial on cleaning off a plant’s leaves and roots is at chamlist.org
If you want to learn a little more about neoics and our retail plants
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