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Frilled Neck Lizards
 
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Frilled Neck Lizards

Frilled Neck Lizards

Chlamydosaurus Kingii

 

 

These awesome Australian Icons are relatively new to us as we have only been keeping them for a few months now. We have a male adult and a male hatchy with more hatchies arriving this week. So all up, we will have three different bloodlines.

The following is a care sheet provided to us by Brett Shuttleworth (Breeder of Frilled Neck Lizards)

 

Frilled Lizard Husbandry

 

Below is a summary of the feeding, housing and handling requirements of Frilled Lizards in captivity.  It is based on personal experience, discussions with other keepers/breeders, and the available literary material.  I believe it to be a worthwhile guide, particularly for those who have not kept frillies before.

 

Feeding

 

  • Frillies should be fed predominantly an insect diet.  Mice and witchety grubs are a good source of food as the lizards grow large enough to eat them.  A wet mix consisting of cat food, carrot and green lettuce can be fed, however in my experience this seems to pass rather quickly through their digestive system so I only use it sparingly.
  • Frillies have huge appetites, so I would recommend buying woodies and crickets in bulk, or breeding your own.
  • I feed the juveniles every other day, and the adults about three times a week (usually in the afternoons).
  • If you are housing multiple frillies together it pays to feed them separately (or at least position them at opposite ends of the vivarium), as the frill flaps in and out during feeding and competing for food can lead to frill damage.
  • I usually provide a dietary supplement about once a week.  I prefer to dust the insects with Aristopet Reptivite (although there are many other suitable alternatives available), and also feed the insects with Gutload.  Care should be taken not to overuse the supplements, especially if your frilly has regular exposure to natural UV light.
  • Adult frillies rarely drink, but should gain enough hydration from their food.  If you are concerned about dehydration or your frilly shows signs of heat stress, Id recommend spray misting with water.  Juvenile frillies enjoy running through and sitting in the water bowl, so ensure that the water is shallow enough and that the frilly can escape from the bowl easily in order to prevent drowning.

 

Housing

 

  • Frillies are an arboreal species and will spend a majority of their time in an elevated position, so ideally the vivarium should be as tall as it is wide, with multiple opportunities for climbing (branches, vines and rock walls).  It also pays to have the vivarium situated off the ground (ie. on a table or stand) if possible.
  • Care should be taken to remove all sharp edges from branches etc, as these can snag and damage the frill.
  • Frillies prefer a warm humid environment.  This can be achieved by placing a large water dish and maintaining a temperature of 28 degrees celcius on the cool side of the vivarium.  If you wish you can cool the vivarium by a few degrees over winter to mimic the natural seasons, however in my experience this is not necessary to encourage breeding or natural behaviour from captive frillies.
  • As with any reptile it is important to provide suitable covers for the heat lamps (especially if ceramic heaters are to be used), to prevent burns should your frilly choose to jump on them.
  • Frillies grow quickly so be prepared!  A vivarium 1200mm wide x 1200mm high x 600mm deep is the smallest I would recommend for 1-2 adult frillies.
  • The fluoro tube used should have the highest UVB output available (minimum 5% UVB output), and the frilly must be able to bask within 200-300mm of the fluro.  I would recommend using a double batten fluoro with an Exo Terra Reptiglo 8.0 (ie. 8% UVB) in combination with an Exo Terra Reptiglo 2.0 (which has a higher proportion of UVA and visual light).
  • There is no substitute for natural UV light, so I would recommend getting your frillies out in the sun as much as possible.  Unless you are prepared to spend hours supervising, its best to purchase a Herparium sunshade (or similar).  Care should be taken with enclosures made from bird wire as these can result in snout damage (as the lizards run back and forth against the mesh).  Never leave the frillies out in extreme hot weather, and always remember to provide sufficient shade over part of the Herparium.
  • Frillies can be housed with similar sized lizards of other species, such as bearded dragons, water dragons, sleepy lizards and blue tongues.  However it is important to observe the lizards for any territorial behaviour and separate them if necessary (and I would also recommend removing any gravid females from a group environment).

 

Handling

 

  • In my experience frillies are happy to be handled as much as you like.  My adult pair are extremely placid and happily eat from my hand.  Some keepers report problems with their frillies sulking (ie. hiding from view, not eating etc).  This is usually due to an induced stress such as a move between different vivariums, a change of handler, or a scare by a dog or cat.  Ive never experienced these problems despite the fact that my frillies have been exposed to all of these stresses at various times.

 

 

 

Brett Shuttleworth, 2007

 



Photos of our Frilled Neck Lizards

Please enjoy the following pics of our Frilled Neck Lizards:

"Homer" 3 year old Male

Homer eating a pinkie mouse

Homer at Rest

 

"Freddy" Little Male Frill Neck

 



 


reptilearachnid@optusnet.com.au


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