Chamaeleo calyptratus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Chamaeleo calyptratus
Species Authority: Duméril & Bibron in Duméril & Duméril, 1851
Common Name/s:
English Veiled Chameleon, Cone-head Chameleon, Yemen Chameleon
Chamaeleo calcaratus Peters, 1870
Taxonomic Notes: Subspecies:
C. calyptratus calcarifer Peters, 1871.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-02-06
Assessor/s: Wilms, T., Sindaco, R. & Shobrak, M.
Reviewer/s: Bowles, P. & Tolley, K.
Contributor/s: De Silva, R., Milligan, HT, Wearn, O.R., Wren, S., Zamin, T., Sears, J., Wilson, P., Lewis, S., Lintott, P. & Powney, G.
Facilitator/s: Bowles, P.
Chamaeleo calyptratus has been assessed as Least Concern owing to its tolerance of a broad range of habitats, including anthropogenic environments. Although included within the pet trade, animals are currently sourced primarily from captive-bred or non-indigenous sources and hence this does not represent a threat to wild populations.
2011 Least Concern

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This chameleon is distributed in the south-western Arabian Peninsula, in an area stretching from the Asir Province in Saudi Arabia to the surroundings of Aden in Yemen (Nečas 1999). Because of the pet trade, this species is now reported to be established in Florida and a feral population is also present in Hawaii (Krysko et al. 2004, Kraus and Fern 2004). This species is found between 1,200 and 2,000 m above sea level, and its extent of occurrence is estimated as approximately 136,600 km2.
Saudi Arabia; Yemen
United States
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This is a generally common species, and in parts of its range is found in high densities.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This arboreal species occurs in the most vegetated area of the Arabian Peninsula, predominantly in woodland (M. Shobrak pers. comm. February 2012). It does not prefer any specific habitat, and can be found on acacia branches, on shrubs and even cultivated plants (Nečas 1999). It can also be found in tree alleys along busy road-ways and on trees in village gardens.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): It is unlikely that any major threat is impacting this species. This species has been collected for the pet trade, however exports from Arabia have declined in recent years and most trade is now in captive-bred animals. Development of roads and associated infrastructure may represent localized threats to the chameleon's habitat and may increase the number of animals killed on roads (M. Shobrak pers. comm. February 2012).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is listed on CITES Appendix II. There are no further species-specific conservation measures in place, or needed, for this species.
Citation: Wilms, T., Sindaco, R. & Shobrak, M. 2012. Chamaeleo calyptratus. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <>. Downloaded on 17 April 2014.
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