Amazing Facts About Chameleons

How well do you know the chameleon? Well, here are a few facts about chameleons to help you along. 

1. Most people believe that chameleons change colour to camouflage themselves in their environment, but modern day scientists disagree. It seems that chameleons change colour according to their mood or the temperature and light in their surroundings, but amazingly they also believe it could be a way of communication with other chameleons!

2.Generally chameleons change from brown to green and back again, however there are some chameleons that can turn almost any colour. A change of colour can happen in as little time as 20 seconds!

3.Chameleons can see in two directions at once and have a 360 degree arc of vision giving them the most unusual eyes out of all the reptiles. Their upper and lower eyelids are actually joined with only a tiny space through which the pupil can see through. Compared to other reptiles they have amazing vision and can spot prey from a long distance off.

4.The chameleon’s tongue, in most species, is twice the length of their body. Strangely enough the smaller the chameleon the longer their tongue! They feed by projecting their tongue at an incredible speed from their mouth to catch their prey located a fair distance away, they successfully catch their prey in under a second! The tip of the tongue is a ball of muscle and as it hits the victim it forms a suction cap, making every hit a positive one, unless you are the prey of course!

5.They have terrible hearing, just like snakes they do not have an ear opening or eardrum! However they are not deaf and pick up sound frequencies very well.

6.Chameleons have funny toes! Each foot has 5 toes which are divided into sections of either 2 or 3 toes, making each foot look very much like a tong. These clever feet allow the chameleon to grip tightly onto narrow and rough branches and are highly adapted to move around in trees!

7.There are about 160 different species of chameleon in the world, and almost half of these are found on the island of Madagascar! Naturally these incredible creatures are also found in Africa, Southern Europe, Asia and Sri Lanka.

8.Most male chameleons have either head or facial ornamentations such as nasal protrusions or horns, some species even boast crests on the top of their heads. All these additions act as ornaments of attraction for the female of the kind!

 

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