[2015] gabriel issa: The Panther Chameleon

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by msanders308
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[2015] gabriel issa: The Panther Chameleon

by Gabriel Issa

The Panther Chameleon

Panther Chameleons are reptiles and have been on Earth for over 150 million years.They live in Madagascar. They can camouflage by switching cells in their skin. When they blend into their environment they are almost invisible! They can see 360 degrees around them! They are like superheroes, but as you know, all superheroes have enemies. Our hero’s enemies are the turtle, the bird, and the scorpion. Panther Chameleons need to hide from them! Now they must use their super powers to hide! They have Y shaped feet to help them climb trees, and they also have tongues that can go 10 miles an hour - that is fast! They can also hang by their tail. Panther Chameleons eat crickets, silk worms, and caterpillars.

Panther Chameleons have a diet of caterpillars, silkworms and last but definitely not least crickets. That is very different from the American diet of processed meat, pizza, and bread products. Most humans eat food by using utensils or hands, but Panther Chameleons use their tongues to eat. They shoot out their tongues extremely fast, and at the tip of their tongues is a suction cup that looks like a plunger. They catch their prey with the plunger, that is how they eat. Then they grow to about 17 inches long for males, and half that for females.

Things are looking bright in mating season because male Panther Chameleons use bright colors such as red, green, and blue to attract females. If a female does not want to mate with the male, they change colors. If the male and the female mate, they have eggs. Females find a good place to bury their eggs, then they dig, then rest, etc. until the hole is deep enough. Then they lay the eggs. After they lay the eggs, they leave. The eggs stay in the ground for around 12 months. When the eggs hatch, the babies are born brown then change into brighter colors.

Panther Chameleons are not dangerous. They are near the bottom of the food chain, which in some ways is utterly horrible. Panther Chameleons don’t just let themselves be eaten, they use their defenses to hide from the bird, the turtle, and the scorpion. But how will they hide or defend themselves? Well, usually they see the predators coming because they can see 360 degrees around them. And if they see the predator nearby, they camouflage by switching cells in their skin. Because they can also hang by their tails, they can trick predators by dangling from tree branches and looking like leaves.

Panther Chameleons can trick predators by hanging from tree branches and looking like leaves!


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