Veiled Chameleon

Diet in the Wild

The veiled chameleon is an insectivore. It may also eat leaves as a source of water during the dry seasons.

Colors of the Veiled Chameleon

The male veiled chameleon is green in color and, depending on the animal's emotional state, this green will range from a bright lime green to a red olive drab. Surroundings only partly contribute to a chameleon's "decision" to change color.

The green base color is marked with stripes and spots of yellow, brown, and blue. Non-breeding females and juvenile chameleons are generally a uniform green color with some white markings. Breeding and gravid females are a very dark green with blue and yellow spots. The prominence of these markings is dependent on several factors including health, mood, and temperature of the lizard.

Male chameleons of the species have small spurs or heels on the back their rear feet; while females do not. This spur is present on males from hatching, and can grow larger with maturity. Aside from the previously mentioned color differences, adult male veiled chameleons are large animals. It is possible for them to reach an overall length of 24 inches (60 cm). Most specimens usually reach between 14 to 18 inches (35–45 cm). Females are smaller with the average overall length being just under 12 inches (30 cm). Males and females both have a decorative growth called a "casque" on their heads. The casque of a male chameleon is much taller than the female's.

Male vs. Female Veiled Chameleon
Male Female
Color Green base color with stripes and spots of yellow, brown and blue Uniform green color with some white markings
Feet Small spurs, "heels" on back of feet No spur heel
Length Longer Length, overall 24" Smaller Length, overall under 12"
Casque Larger Smaller

Life Span

Approximately 5 years in captivity.


Veiled chameleon males can reach 18-24 inches in total length (about 12 inches snout to vent length), while females tend to be quite a bit smaller at 10-13 inches (just 4-6 inches in snout to vent length).


The veiled chameleon has a large, tall casque, or helmet-like structure on the top of their head. It is present in both males and females, though it is larger in males. Their bodies are banded in shades of green, yellow and brown.

Fun Fact

They are probably best known for their long, sticky tongues that they use to catch prey. The tongue can be more than 1.5 times the length of their body. They "shoot" their prey with a tongue that can be projected in the blink of an eye.