Have you ever wondered which chameleon species are the largest Chameleons in the world? Chameleons come in a wide variety of subspecies, and each subspecies is unique from the others by a set of distinctive characteristics and peculiarities.
What Are the Largest Chameleons in the World?
If you’re like most people, you probably had no idea that some chameleons can grow to be fairly massive.
Following this, you will find a list of what we believe to be the largest chameleons in the world, as well as a few honorable mentions that are highly deserving of your attention.
When discussing chameleons, it is important to keep in mind that adjectives such as “biggest” and “largest” are relative.
This is because the longest species does not always have to be the one that is the heaviest. There is a lot of back and forth regarding this topic.
Despite this, we believe that more than one chameleon deserves the title of “Largest Chameleon in the World,” both in terms of their total body mass and overall size.
1. Veiled Chameleon (Chamaeleo calyptratus)
Because of efforts to breed them in captivity, veiled chameleons, also known as Yemen Chameleons, are becoming increasingly popular as pets.
Animals captured in the wild have a reputation for having difficulty adjusting to life in captivity. However, animals developed by breeders such as ourselves are more resilient than ever and flourish when kept in the appropriate conditions.
A fully mature Veiled Chameleon turns out to be one of the largest chameleons found anywhere in the world.
This species has a reputation for being somewhat aggressive and defensive, yet they do very well when kept in captivity. Over the course of our existence, we have produced thousands of them.
Male veiled chameleons can grow to lengths of up to two feet, while females are just somewhat shorter than their male counterparts (approximately 18 inches in length).
The average length of a hatchling at birth is about three inches, and they quickly become healthy and strong after birth.
The life expectancy of a veiled chameleon might be unpredictable. The average lifespan of a well-cared-for male is anywhere from five to eight years, whereas the average lifespan of a well-cared-for girl is between four and six years.
Males often live longer than females. This is the case because the act of reproducing, even if it only results in the laying of sterile egg clutches, is taxing on the female (much like a chicken).
2. Oustalet’s Chameleon (Furcifer oustaleti)
The Oustalet’s chameleon comes in at number two on our list of the largest chameleons. Oustalet’s chameleons, whose name is pronounced “Ooh-stuh-lay,” can grow up to 69 centimeters (27 inches) in length.
They are also known as the Malagasy Giant Chameleon. Females are shorter than males and typically don’t grow to be more than two feet long.
It is interesting to note that although these guys are not the largest chameleons in terms of body mass, they are only surpassed in length by Parson’s chameleons.
The female Oustalet’s Chameleon is somewhat smaller than the majority of the males, although the species as a whole is still quite huge.
Although they tend to remain within the brown color spectrum range, just like other chameleons, Oustalet’s chameleons have the ability to change their color depending on their moods.
This allows them to display colors such as black, rusty orange, and even blue at times. Males are often darker and less colorful in appearance compared to their female counterparts.
The head crests and ridge spines of males are more prominently displayed than those of females. These chameleons have enormous appetites, probably because they are so massive.
They will take insects and other foods typical to chameleons, but they are also efficient hunters and may consume smaller lizards (including smaller chameleons) and even birds when they are in the wild.
The Reptiles of the Backwater When you give mealworms, crickets, and other large invertebrates to Oustalet’s chameleons, they will grab them right out of your fingers.
This makes feeding them a lot of fun. You’d be amazed at how long their tongues are, that’s for sure! Adult female Oustalets can be aggressive sometimes.
3. Meller’s Chameleon (Chamaeleo melleri)
The Meller’s Chameleon, also known as the “Bird-Eating Chameleon” and the “Giant One-Horned Chameleon,” can grow to a length of roughly two feet.
The vibrant green, yellow, and black colors of these chameleons, their huge occipital lobes (the crest that sits behind the ears), and solitary rostral horn make them easily distinguishable (nose horn).
Be on the lookout for signs of dehydration in your melleri chameleons, like sunken eyes or wrinkled, drooping skin, and make sure that the humidity level in their surroundings is at the appropriate level.
There is a tendency for Meller’s Chameleons to display brilliant green and black spots whenever they feel threatened or under stress. They are huge chameleons that are referred to as “bird-eaters” at times.
One interesting characteristic of Meller’s chameleons is that their tongues can grow as long as their bodies, and even occasionally more than that!
In terms of nutrition, Meller’s will feed on large insects such as super worms, hornworms, large crickets, and roaches. They will also consume large crickets.
They are incredible creatures that are chock full of grit and possess an enormous amount of gripping strength.
4. Parson’s Chameleon (Calumma parsonii)
The Parson’s Chameleon is a genuine giant among chameleons. They are the longest and heaviest of all chameleons, reaching lengths of up to 28 inches and weighing anywhere from a pound to two pounds.
To put that in perspective, they can be the size of a small house cat. It’s not just their incredible length; it’s also the substantial mass that they carry.
Males, which can vary in color, have ridges extending from the side of their eyes down to their nostrils, forming two blunt horns.
Females do not have these ridges. Females do not have horns but do have little head crests and sometimes have nose “bumps” on the tops of their noses. Males have more prominent horns than females.
Because of the increasingly stringent limitations placed on Parson’s export and the relatively low number of captive breedings, this reptile species is significantly less prevalent within the pet reptile industry. Because they are so uncommon and do not carry any parasites, These animals fetch a higher price.
5. Giant Spiny Chameleon (Furcifer verrucosus)
The giant spiny chameleon can grow rather large, but it is not quite as large as some other types of chameleons. They can still reach 22–23 inches, which is undoubtedly a large size, but they are not as massive or as heavy as they once were.
They get their name from the remarkable height of their dorsal spikes, which also cause their head casques to be taller than their cousins, the Oustalet. There are hypotheses that the two different species can and do mate with one another in the wild.
There have been consistent experiences of a one hundred percent hatch rate, which is evidence that their eggs incubate effectively.
They can reproduce rather easily and do so frequently as well. The males can grow to be huge, while the females stay relatively smaller throughout their lives.
These chameleons are not as vulnerable to dehydration as the majority of other chameleons because they are native to the arid regions of Madagascar.