Presentation in Cologne about chameleon keeping

Presentation in Cologne about chameleon keeping

Haltungsberichte Live lectures

Jean-Dominique Dufraine, member of the AG Chameleons, will give a detailed lecture on 16 December 2023 in Cologne on the keeping of two chameleon species.

It will be about the tiger chameleon, Archaius tigris, and a species of stump-tailed chameleon, Rieppeleon brevicaudatus. The tiger chameleon comes from the Seychelles and has been successfully bred in terrariums for many years. In recent years it has found an increasingly small group of enthusiasts. The fact that the tiger chameleon can be kept well in a group is particularly important. Rieppeleon brevicaudatus, a species originally from Tansania, has been somewhat forgotten in recent years, having been bred in quite good numbers in the 2000s and up to the beginning of the 2010s. Wrongly so! Because these are very interesting chameleons that are quite easy to keep. Jean-Dominique has been keeping and breeding both species for several years and passes on tips and tricks on keeping and breeding. He hopes that both species will have a good chance of being reintroduced into German terrariums in the future and would like to actively contribute to spreading the joy of keeping these animals.

Jean-Dominique Dufraine Keeping and breeding Archaius tigris and Rieppeleon brevicaudatus
Verein für Aquarien- und Terrarienkunde Köln-Mühlheim e.V. 1910
DGHT City Group Cologne
Restaurant “Steakhaus bei Marco”
Clevischer Ring 120-122
51063 Cologne
Start of lecture 20.00 hrs

Photo: Archaius tigris by Jean-Dominique-Dufraine

Comparison of pelvic girdles in chameleons

Comparison of pelvic girdles in chameleons


The anatomy of chameleons is strongly adapted to their way of life. Tree-dwellers differ in many aspects from ground-dwellers. The pelvic girdle has been little studied anatomically in chameleons so far – a publication from the USA now deals with it in more detail.

For the study, the pelvic girdles of 22 chameleons were isolated from existing microcomputer tomography scans and displayed in 3D. These were measured to 16 different lengths and angles using software. Archaius tigris, Bradypodion damaranum, Calumma gallus, Calumma parsonii parsonii, Chamaeleo zeylanicus, Furcifer balteatus, Kinyongia matschiei, Kinyongia tavetana, Nadzikambia mlanjense and Trioceros quadricornis gracilior were assigned to tree dwellers. Brookesia brygooi, Chamaeleo namaquensis, Palleon nasus nasus, Rhampholeon temporalis and Rieppeleon brachyurus were attributed to ground-dwelling species. The species Bradypodion occidentale, Brookesia ebenaui, Chamaeleo anchietae, Furcifer campani, Rhampholeon spinosus, Rieppeleon kerstenii kerstenii and Trioceros goetzei goetzei were classified as semiarboreal. Mainly males were examined.

As expected, the evaluation showed that tree-dwelling chameleons had narrower, shorter girdles than ground-dwelling ones. The narrower pelvic girdle makes it easier to hide behind branches and flatten the body to the maximum. It also ensures that the body’s centre of gravity is closer to the branch and thus increases stability when climbing. Ground-dwelling chameleons, on the other hand, had larger and wider pelvic girdles. These allow them to step more quickly and provide greater stability when walking on ground surfaces.

How phylogeny and arboreality affect pelvic girdle anatomy of chameleons
Dakota J. John
Honors Thesis 299, University of South Dakota, 2023
DOI: none


Our conference programme for May 2023

Our conference programme for May 2023

AG Interna

After we were able to publish a preview of the conference programme in December last year, we now have the final conference programme. This year’s conference will take place from 05 to 07 May 2023 in the tranquil town of Boppard am Rhein. As experience shows that the weekends in Boppard are booked up quickly, we recommend that you look for a hotel or guesthouse soon. Our programme has become a nice mixture of keeping reports, general terraristics and travel reports. Friday is the traditional day for arrival and a pleasant dinner in the local restaurants.

Saturday starts with a classic husbandry and breeding report. Jean-Dominique Dufraine has been keeping Rieppeleon brevicaudatus and Archaius tigris for several years. He talks about his experiences in breeding, but also in the everyday keeping of the two species. Afterwards, Thorsten Negro will take us on a search for Parson’s Chameleons in their natural habitat in Madagascar.

In the afternoon, Oliver Witte will give us an exciting insight into law, legislation and terrarium keeping – don’t worry, it won’t be as dry as it sounds, but very interesting for chameleon keepers. As a highlight, the physicist Sarina Wunderlich from has also agreed to join us. LEDs are becoming increasingly popular in terrarium keeping, not least because they can save a lot of electricity. Sarina will show us the advantages and risks of LEDs and discuss the latest development, UV LEDs. After these two presentations, we have planned plenty of time for discussion and questions, because there will certainly be plenty to talk about. At the end of Saturday, Rayana Vuillemain will introduce us to the Association Caméléon Centre Conservation (Switzerland) – this is the only presentation in English.

Sunday will be another colourful day: Lars Dwinger will report on a Madagascar trip to the southern highlands and the central east of the island. He travelled between carpet chameleons and rice fields as well as in the rainforest of Ranomafana, where he met a variety of small and large chameleons. Markus Grimm will conclude with an overview of Chamaeleo chamaeleon in its natural habitat in Europe as well as keeping and breeding them in terrariums.

We are very much looking forward to a nice meeting and many chameleon friends!

New publication: A book about the tiger chameleon

New publication: A book about the tiger chameleon

Book publications

Until now, there was no book that dealt with the keeping of the tiger chameleon. You had to painstakingly search for individual reports on keeping tiger chameleons from various sources and puzzle together small pieces of information to form a larger unit. With the newly published book by Markus Grimm, who has been a member of the AG Chamäleons for almost 20 years, this has now changed. Markus Grimm was responsible for the first breeding of the tiger chameleon in 2004 and teaches courses on chameleons in Switzerland.

The first quarter of the book is about chameleons in general. The distribution and the diversity of the different species and their habitats are presented. A brief overview of possible diseases of chameleons in terraristics as well as tips on what should be considered when buying a chameleon completes this part of the book. Then it’s on to the tiger chameleon itself. The distribution and habitat of the small chameleons on the Seychelles islands of Mahé, Praslin and Silhouette are presented. This is followed by herpetoculture: basics such as terrarium size, ventilation and climate technology are explained as well as CITES listing and corresponding keeper obligations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. In the biology of the tiger chameleon, some information is repeated and specified for the species. The sex determination of the tiger chameleon is explained in detail so that even a beginner should be able to select suitable animals for a small breeding group after reading the book. The author gives concrete recommendations on food quantity and food insects. Many personal experiences of the author form the main focus of the book. The book concludes with a detailed section on the reproduction of the tiger chameleon in the terrarium. Mating, pregnancy and egg-laying are discussed in richly illustrated detail. The author also dispels the myth that Archaius tigris only lays its eggs in leaf axils. It does show this behaviour frequently, but there are also tiger chameleons that bury their eggs in the ground like other egg-laying chameleon species of the Indian Ocean. Egg incubation and hatching as well as the rearing of the young complete the species presentation.

The book is aimed at anyone who is considering keeping Archaius tigris. The large font makes it easy to read. In some places, the lack of picture descriptions, some technically vague information and a lot of detached photos disturb the reading flow a little. The first quarter of the book also sometimes gets lost in other chameleon species. However, it then finds its way back to the tiger chameleon to deliver the world’s first book of its kind on Archaius tigris. The advanced chameleon keeper will certainly enjoy the last third of the book most, with many details on the propagation of the species and rearing of the young. For the novice keeper, the book offers a great deal of very valuable information for good, chameleon-friendly husbandry.

The book is only available in German. It is self-published and can be ordered from the author.


The tiger chameleon (Archaius tigris) – keeping, care and reproduction
Markus Grimm
131 pages, Self-published
ISBN 978-3-033-09238-9
currently at the introductory price of 20 CHF/€ excluding shipping
otherwise 22,90 CHF (currently 22,90 €) excluding shipping
Order directly from the author