Friday, August 27, 2010

Chameleon, the turncoat!

We call turncoats as 'Chameleons' ('Pacshondhi' in Tamil), comparing their changing character! Though this Common Chameleon (Chameleo chameleon) is popular for its changing its color, it is not easily seen here. But this animal has many other special modifications also, like mobile eyes, long extrudable tongue, prehensile tail. Its toes are found fused in into two groups - an adaptation for climbing up the tree with good grip.

Its two eyes can move independently and thus can see two different objects at a time. If both of its eyes focus on an object it can have stereoscopic vision - seeing depth, as we have! They don't have ears like snakes. Their tongues are longer than their body's length! On seeing a prey they shot out the tongue, get the prey stuck to the sticky tongue's tip and take in it into the mouth quickly! The chameleons are seen both in tropical regions and rain forests. They eat mantis, locusts and crickets. Males have colored crests unlike the females. In oviparous chameleons, females dig hole in ground and lay eggs at a foot's depth and bury them. Eggs hatch in about twelve months.
Now coming to its changing color of the skin, (e.g. Smith's Dwarf Chameleon) they have specialized skin cells called Chromatophores. Skin layers have different pigments that produce or change the colors blending with the surroundings!
This wonder lizard is thus popular both in its physical and physiological functions!


Anonymous said...

in the camouflage blog it was written that chameleon changes color to show mood but in chameleon the turncoat blog it was written it changes color to blend with the surroundings

Cosmos said...

OK. Chameleons do change their color for expressing their mood also. It is also said that they do this as a primary purpose only. Changing color for preying is for secondary purpose only! Read the 'Change of Color' here:
Thanks for comparing the posts and pointing out the difference of meaning in statements. The post has been made now to convey the clear meaning. You can use Name/URL for commenting.

Asha said...

peripa it was me who sent it yesterday sorry i forgot to write my name next time ill remember

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