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Biology

In common with other chameleon species, the Sahel chameleon feeds on large insects, which it catches using its remarkable, extensile tongue. The contraction of special muscles within the tongue rapidly propels it towards the prey, which is snared by a combination of the tongue's sticky mucous coating and a vacuum created by muscles in the tip (3). The colour changing abilities of chameleons are well known, and serve multiple purposes, including social displays and indicating breeding condition (3). In this species, gravid females utilize their body colour to indicate that they are not receptive to mating, thereby preventing unwanted attention from breeding males (5). In captivity, the Sahel chameleon lays up to 70 eggs in a single clutch, and buries them in an underground nest. However, fewer eggs are typically laid in the wild. Once the eggs hatch, the juvenile chameleons take between 12 and 16 months to reach sexual maturity (2).

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Source: ARKive

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