Panther chameleon

Furcifer pardalis

Newquay Zoo Panther chameleon
IUCN Conservation Status –
Least Concern
Extinct In The Wild
Class: Reptiles
Order: Squamata
Family: Chamaeleonidae

Head to the Tropical House to find our panther chameleon.

This chameleon is native to tropical forests and bushes in the eastern and northern parts of Madagascar.

Their diet mostly consists of insects like grasshoppers, crickets and cockroaches, but they will also eat other reptiles and small birds. They are solitary, territorial animals that are most active in the day and spend most of their time foraging in trees.

Interesting facts!

  • Female panther chameleons tend to be tan and brown with hints of pink, peach, or bright orange, no matter where they are found. However, males can be vibrant blue, red, green or orange, and their colour patterns will vary depending on location.
  • They are called ‘panther’ chameleons because the Latin name pardalis means ‘spotted like a panther or leopard’.
  • Instead of changing colour to blend in with their surroundings, chameleons actually change colour depending on temperature, mood and light levels. When two males come into contact, they will change colour and inflate their bodies to assert dominance.


Panther chameleons are common throughout their native range and are listed as being of least concern, though they are very popular animals within the pet trade.