Supplementation Schedules

Schedules 1-3 are easy, safe and have a proven track record.  Schedules 4-6 are more challenging, and assume an excellent gut loading regime, regular monitoring of uvb levels with a Solarmeter, and consistent health monitoring.

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1. Old Faithful

This is a tried and tested supplementation schedule that is still widely used.  

  1. Plain (phosphorus free) calcium WITHOUT D3 every feeding

  2. Every two weeks, calcium WITH D3 is used for one feeding.

  3. Every two weeks, a multivitamin is used for one feeding.

                   (the latter two on alternating weeks)

Variants: b. and c. can be combined if your multivitamin powder contains appropriate levels of D3 (e.g. Reptivite WITH D3)

For sensitive species such as montanes (e.g. Jackson’s chameleons) steps b and c should be once per month rather than once every two weeks.

It is important to keep in mind that the calcium WITH D3 product you use will depend a lot on your UVB situation.  If your UVB is on point, then I see no reason to use a D3 product with any more than 10,000 international units/lb. If your UVB situation could use some improvement, then something in the 20,000-30,000 IU/lb. is probably safer. Also, keep in mind that some multivitamins use beta-carotene instead of vitamin A.  If you’re using this schedule, you’re most likely relying on the safety net of fat-soluble vitamins given every two weeks. That being the case, herptivite will not work here.  

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2. The All-In-One

This is a rather new development in the supplementation game, championed by Repashy.  It is the easiest supplementation regime to follow, but as mentioned above, some keepers have found it excessive.  

  1. Repashy Calcium Plus LoD at every feeding.

Variants: (regular) Repashy Calcium Plus at every feeding if you are still using T8 UVB lighting.

I wouldn’t recommend this regime for sensitive species such as montanes.

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3. The Chameleon Academy Schedule

As the name suggests, this is the supplement regime recommended on the Chameleon Academy website. 

  1. Arcadia earthpro A at every feeding

  2. Arcadia RevitalizeD3 every two weeks.

Variants: For sensitive species step b. is once per month. Note that this schedule is more minimalistic than the previous two and assumes a good gutloading regime and proper UVB lighting.

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4. D3-Free

I would caution anyone before using this regime.  With the threat of MBD, the stakes are high.  Unless you own a solar meter and have your UVB such that your chameleon can access UVI’s between 3 and 5, then this method is not for you.  

  1. Arcadia Earthpro A at every feeding

  2. Acradia calcium pro + MG every 8-14 days

  3. Occasional (once/month) use of small amounts of vitamin A, either with extremely careful use of a product such as Repashy Vitamin A, or with drops of retinol gelcaps.

Variants: Mix Earthpro A and Calcium Pro + MG at 10 -12 parts EPA to 1 part CPMG, and use at every feeding.

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5. D3/A-Free

The same caveats apply here with the added warning that particular attention needs to be paid to ensuring a huge number of different carotenoids are present in the gutload.  This is an experimental regime that requires the keeper to be on the lookout for signs of vitamin A deficiency.

  1. Arcadia Earthpro A at every feeding

  2. Acradia calcium pro + MG every 8-14 days

Variants: Mix Earthpro A and Calcium Pro + MG at 10 -12 parts EPA to 1 part CPMG, and use at every feeding.

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6. The Bare-Bones

This is the most minimalistic supplementation regime I know of. Experienced keepers have used it successfully, but YOU HAVE TO BE ON THE BALL AND HAVE ALL OTHER ASPECTS OF HUSBANDRY ON POINT.

  1. Plain calcium with no D3 at every feeding

Variants: add some bee pollen to the calcium once a week.

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Tailor-made Schedules

Some advanced keepers prefer to tailor make their supplementation regimes to reflect the nutritional value of the feeders they give (e.g. BSFL do not need to be dusted with calcium), or to accomodate the differences in sensitivity from individual to individual.  I have a female pardalis that gets edema when given anything but plain calcium.  Personally, I find something highly intuitive about this kind of approach, but it needs to be undertaken with a level of caution and experience that new keepers rarely have.