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How to make a feeding cup. Pros & Cons

by Vincent on November 17, 2011

A feeding cup is simply a cup that you use to feed your chameleon. Before going into the details of how to make one, let’s go over the pros and cons of using one.

Advantages of using a feeding cup

Feeding cups are a good way to keep things clean. Instead of having crickets hide behind plants and furnishings, they are all isolated to a cup. In addition, the crickets also stay cleaner. Crickets are less exposed to the bacteria on cage bottom floors. Having said that, your cage floors shouldn’t be dirty in the first place.

Besides keeping things clean, it also makes tracking food intake easy. You can count how many your chameleon eats by simply counting how many are left in the cup. Cricket dust also tends to stay on longer, which eliminates the risk that your chameleon isn’t getting enough supplementation.

Disadvantages of using a feeding cup

The biggest disadvantage of using a feeding cup is the lack of exercise your chameleon will receive. Chameleons tend to get lazy when cup-trained. A side effect is that they also seem to stop using their tongues in favor of sticking their entire heads into the cups. For many, this reason alone is enough to free-roam feed. We also don’t recommend cup-feeding female panther chameleons. We believe that a female needs to be well-exercised to avoid complications with egg-laying.

How to make a feeding cup

Start with a semi-see-thru cup. You can pick up a soup cup at Whole Foods. They have the tall cups that work perfectly. Make sure they are not completely transparent as they will try to shoot right through it and injure their tongue.

Start with a up

Start with a up

Next, cut a hole at the bottom for drainage. This is optional if you are not using a misting system and plan to clean the cup daily. But I do stress that you need to keep the cup very clean. Even with screen, you still need to clean frequently.

Cut a hole at the bottom

Cut a hole at the bottom

Once you remove the bottom, you’ll need to glue a piece of aluminum screen to the bottom. Aquarium glue works very well for this. Make sure you use something safe.

Glue Screen To The Bottom

Glue Screen To The Bottom

Place a wire around the top-rim of the cup. Bend it in such a way that you have a hook at the end. Place the cup near your chameleon’s favorite spot. It can be directly under his/her branch or on the side.

Secure the cup on the cage

Secure the cup on the cage

{ … read them below or add one }

John Hildebrand November 18, 2011 at 9:35 am

I want the awesome looking male panther cham in the photo!! PLEASE!

Thanks for the INFO and have a great day!

John @ JCH Reptiles

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admin November 18, 2011 at 9:49 am

Hey John, This stunner is not for sale. The good news is that we have a couple that will turn out like him as an adult.

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Sherlin Davis November 18, 2011 at 11:31 am

He looks like Thor 🙂 I actually mix it up. I only use the cup for roaches and worms. The rest are free range. The roaches are too good at hiding and they can hide for a long time, like over a week. I definitely would recommend to use both, but not to just cup feeding. They’re hunters and they need that be excitement and exercise.

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admin November 18, 2011 at 12:09 pm

Sherlin, that is actually perfect. You just want to make sure he is getting a work out during the day.

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Scott November 19, 2011 at 11:41 am

Hi,

Nice article. I have always used a big plastic cookie container (about 10″ in diameter and 4″ tall. It’s tall enough to keep most crickets in. And I leave it at the bottom of the cage. My chameleons have to come down from their warming spot to eat, so they do get exercise. And the cup is just under some of my plastic leaves, so they have to use their tongues to feed. And I keep the cookie container clean. And since it just sits on the bottom, it’s easy to take out for cleaning which was important for me.

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Aurelia Lapar November 19, 2011 at 10:02 pm

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Caitlin Okonski November 28, 2011 at 12:49 pm

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Ryan Garza November 29, 2011 at 9:48 pm

WOW!!! That is one impressive ZOO you got going on there. That Cham is phenomenal looking. I’m sure you won’t mind if I just go right ahead and take him off your hands. THANKS!

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Faye January 22, 2012 at 10:51 pm

So, can I feed the chameleon by a feeding cup and letting them go free in the cage in order to give the cham. enought excersize, but still manage the feeding responsibly?

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Farrah January 23, 2012 at 9:11 am

If you have a female, I don’t recommend cup-feeding at all. Even the males can benefit from a little exercise.

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