How Long Do Panther Chameleons Live – 6 Tips For Longer Lifespan

Choosing the right species of chameleons is very important when keeping them as a pet.  One important factor to consider is their life expectancy.  One type of species that is very popular to keep as a pet is the panther chameleons.  These species are known for their longevity in captivity.

How long do panther chameleons live? Male panther chameleons live 5 to 7 years. Female panther chameleons are slightly shorter at about 4 to 6 years. If they are breeding, this will typically decrease their age as well.

Panther Chameleons In Captivity

In captivity, panther chameleon’s life expectancy is between 4 and 7 years.  However, it’s not unusual for some to live past that age.  It all depends on their overall health and how well they are cared for.  Being in captivity gives panther chameleons an edge over their wild counterparts.  In captivity, they don’t have to worry about predators or life-threatening diseases.

Panther Chameleons In The Wild

Being in the wild, their life expectancy is shorter than in captivity.  This is due to diseases, predators, and food availability.  Therefore, their life expectancy will be shorter than those living in captivity.

In their natural habitat, the danger is at every corner. Panther chameleons make good prey for larger predators so they are always on the lookout. Baby and juvenile chameleons are the most at risk of getting eaten by a predator.

6 Tips To Increase Panther Chameleons Lifespan

1. Gender

If you’re looking for a panther chameleon with a long lifespan, gender is a major factor. Male gender will be the best choice. Male chameleons tend to live longer than females for many reasons.

Male chameleons don’t have to worry about pregnancy and laying eggs. Therefore, they don’t have to endure stress.  The less stress they have, the longer they will live.

Female panther chameleons, on the other hand, endure a lot of stress due to laying eggs every 4 months and during pregnancy. Therefore, all of this will weaken the female chameleon’s body and shorten its lifespan.

If you’re looking to increase the female’s lifespan, you can prevent her from frequently laying eggs. Panther chameleons lay eggs regardless of having a male to mate with or not. Therefore, they will lay eggs depending on the temperature and food intake. To prevent her from laying eggs often, reduce the room temperature and reduce the food intake to about 2-3 crickets every 2 days.

2. Genetics

Genetics plays a really important role in the lifespan of your panther chameleons. Therefore, it’s important to always choose a chameleon that has good genetics.

Finding out if the panther chameleons have good genetic or not can be hard to tell. Most places like the pet store will not know if the chameleon has good genetic or not.

One of the places on where to buy chameleons with good genetic is from a breeder. Buying a chameleon from here will usually have good genetics as most breeders will only breed quality chameleons.

3. Quality Food

The higher the quality the food is, the better it is for their health. When it comes to panther chameleons, this is exceptionally true.  What food they eat will need to be quality food and only that.  Quality food means it’s high in nutrition and free of diseases.

Since crickets are their main daily diet, the insects should be alive and free of disease and parasites. It’s not recommended to feed them house crickets since they may contain parasites. It’s best to feed them crickets bought from pet stores. Additionally, you purchase crickets online too. You can purchase these live feeder crickets, which are available on Amazon.

Besides their staple diet of crickets and other insects, it’s recommended to feed them vegetables and fruits as well. Some of the vegetables great for panther chameleons are lettuce, kale, and spinach. As for fruits, you can feed them bananas, apples, and melons, just to name a few.

If you would like to know all the foods they can eat, go to: What do chameleons eat


4. Buy Captive Bred Panther Chameleons

If you’re looking to have your panther chameleon live to their expected lifespan or possibly beyond that, buy captive-bred panther chameleons only.  Captive-bred chameleons have been bred to live in an enclosure and not be stressed. More importantly, they are used to being around people since they were born.

Wild-caught panther chameleons are a big risk for a pet owner, especially if you’re a beginner.  These chameleons will usually have extreme stress, loaded with parasites, extremely aggressive, and will have a difficult time adjusting to their new environment.

Stress is the biggest cause of death for panther chameleons.  When they are caught, they are already stressed, and then they endure more stress as they need to be flown from Madagascar to their destination.  By the time they reach their destination, their health has already deteriorated due to stress.

5. Lighting

In order for panther chameleons to be healthy and have a long lifespan, they will need plenty of sunlight. Since your pet chameleon will mostly be indoors, they will not get the needed sunlight. Therefore, you will need to provide them with artificial lighting that can mimic the sun.

For panther chameleons to be healthy, they need UVA and UVB lights. These are both types of ultraviolet (UV) light. Each type of light plays an important role in maintaining and keeping your panther chameleons healthy. The UV spectrum is divided into three parts: UVA, UVB, and UVC. All three of these types of light are naturally found via the sunlight.

UVB lights allow the synthesis of vitamin D3, which helps to absorb calcium. This can help prevent metabolic bone disease, which is common among chameleons that are kept in captivity.

UVA lights help regulate behaviors such as feeding, diurnal movement, mating, and similar activities.

UVC lights are not needed for panther chameleons. It can be bad if they get too much of UVC rays.

For more in-depth about UVB lighting: Best UVB bulb for chameleons.

To give them the needed lights, you’ll need to purchase a UVB light for them. The lights are specifically made for indoor dwelling reptiles. While there are many different brands and types, you’ll want to get one that is designed for chameleons. For panther chameleons, buy UVB lights with a rating of 5.0.

Besides artificial lighting, you can take the chameleon outside for a couple of hours each day to get sunlight. This is the best form of light for them since it’s natural.

6. Stress-Free Environment

Panther chameleons are one of those reptiles that get stressed easily. Therefore, the environment is very important for preventing stress. How the cage is set up and what items you have in there can all be a factor contributing to their stress.

One of the things is the size of the cage. If the cage is too small for them, they will have a difficult time moving around. When they can’t move, especially vertically, they will start to get stressed. Therefore, it’s a good idea to get a cage that’s big enough for your panther chameleon. The recommended cage size is 24x24x48.

Another thing is other pets you may have in your home. Cats, dogs, and even other reptiles, the panther chameleon sees them as a threat. If your other pets are always around the chameleons often, they will get stressed due to that. Try to keep them away from the chameleon as much as possible.


As you can see from the article, panther chameleon’s lifespan will depend on how well they are taken care of. The better you care for them, the happy they are and the longer they will live. There are some panther chameleons that can live past their expected lifespan too due to great care. Make sure to keep their stress level low, feed them only quality food, provide them UV lights each day, and they’ll live for a very long time.


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