Tuesday, June 9, 2009

She bites him!

This is a picture I took last night of our female veiled chameleon. I could practically be a famous nature photographer!

And onto the news...

Our female chameleon BIT the male!

Holy reptile! But this is unheard of!

He has always been the dominant eater. Pushing her away from the tupperware dish where we release the crickets and worms. Stepping on her if she doesn't move fast enough. Hissing at her.

But she's smart. She figured out there's no reason to run and hide when we creak open the cage door. We're just leaving nibblies.

So, yesterday, I unlatched the door. He scurried off, in the true manner of a frightened bully. She waited on the edge of plastic container. I plopped in three meal worms, a new treat for them.

She focused on them (both eyes looking in the same direction, for a change). She opened her mouth.

Before she could shoot out her sticky-ended tongue, he strutted down the branch, knocked right into her, and gobbled up the three meal worms.

She couldn't believe it. Both her roving eyes registered disbelief. Her mouth still agape, she leaned forward and bit him on the shoulder. There was a brief nose-to-nose face-off, then he backed away.

Here's a grainy picture of him backing away while she stands her ground on the now-empty container. I was shooting through the cage. This is an example of why I'm NOT a famous nature photographer!

So, what's going on? Why is our female veiled suddenly showing chutzpah?

I think all those hours alone in a damp, dark tunnel of wet sand changed our little girl. She wasn't just down there laying twenty-three eggs. She was learning an important lesson about herself. She discovered an inner core of strength and courage. And a bunch of self-esteem.

You go, girl!

25 comments:

beckylevine said...

It's like the dark cave in the hero's journey, where you come out with the "sword!" Okay, maybe not. :)

LOVE the photos. Those two are gorgeous.

Charles Gramlich said...

Sounds like it was about time.

Teresa said...

Hooray for the mama chameleon!! Motherhood makes tigers out of pussycats!

Love this post, Barrie.

Bina said...

I LOVE this story!!! It just takes once, and now he has learned. Mama rules the cage!

Annie said...

Serve him right!

Amy said...

girl power!! :)

pattinase (abbott) said...

Yikes. You must live in San Diego or some such place. Can't imagine these guys thriving here.

Chris Eldin said...

This is priceless!!
I was rooting for her the entire time!
:-)

debra said...

Sounds like the mama bear won over the cave man.

kaye said...

love following this little drama

Barbara Martin said...

Barrie, this is such a cute story. Did you give mamma her very own mealy worms?

lotusgirl said...

This is great. He sure deserved the chomp! What a glut! That's a definite "you go girl" moment.

Jason said...

Whoo! Stick it to the man (I guess literally, in this case)!

Barrie said...

Barbara--yes, we did put more meal worms in the food container. And she ate them!

Beth said...

Your female chameleon is a role model for females everywhere.
Love that determined look on her face – I’m trying to mimic it... ;)

laughingwolf said...

i hope you gave her double the number for standing up for herself... :)

sara said...

Your photography skills are amazing. I bet she's getting ready to fight for her babies. Good for her!

Sarah Laurence said...

Barrie, have you been reading Twilight to Mama chameleon again?

Miss Chevious said...

sounds like the newest member of the ya-ya sisterhood! :)

Sarakastic said...

I'm totally on her side.

Alyssa Goodnight said...

Wow! Your house is a regular Animal Planet! Do you feel like that guy stalking the gecko in the Geico commercials? :)

Alyssa Goodnight said...

I love how you labeled that post with 'meal worms'. Should we expect more posts on that topic??

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Maternal instinct? I love it!

Sheri said...

Something happens to us when we become mothers. We learn that women are exceedingly amazing and we don't need to back down to any man!!!

Solvang Sherrie said...

I'm glad you gave her some meal worms for standing her ground! You go momma!!