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Chameleons: Chamaeleonidae - Armored Chameleon (brookesia Perarmata): Species Accounts

Animal Life ResourceDinosaurs, Snakes, and Other ReptilesChameleons: Chamaeleonidae - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Jackson's Chameleon (chamaeleo Jacksonii): Species Accounts - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, CHAMELEONS AND PEOPLE, CONSERVATION STATUS


Physical characteristics: The armored chameleon is reddish brown, brown, and tan. It has a row of pointed scales projecting from its spine, decreasing in size from the neck to the tail tip. The rest of the body has many thorny scales, giving it an armored appearance. Adults are 6 inches (15.2 centimeters) long.

Geographic range: Armored chameleons are found only in the Tsingy de Bemaraha Nature Reserve in Madagascar.

Habitat: Armored chameleons inhabit bushes, shrubs, and leaf litter in or near dense, dry, deciduous (di-SID-joo-wus) forest, or forests with trees that lose their leaves in cold weather.

Armored chameleons are rarely seen; they hide and do not interact with people in the wild. (Illustration by Joseph E. Trumpey. Reproduced by permission.)

Diet: The armored chameleon feeds on insects and insect larvae.

Behavior and reproduction: The armored chameleon is calm and secretive. It spends most of its life on the ground and does not move about much. Little is known about its breeding habits.

Armored chameleons and people: Armored chameleons are rarely seen; they hide and do not interact with people in the wild. They are collected for the illegal pet trade, but few survive once they are captured.

Conservation status: As a result of habitat destruction and collection for the pet trade, the IUCN has listed the armored chameleon as Vulnerable, meaning that it faces a high risk of extinction in the wild. ∎

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