Video Of Colourful Chameleon, Found In California, Goes Viral

Rescuer says it's a Panther Chameleon, native only to Madagascar.

People in a neighbourhood in California had a tryst with a colourful chameleon recently. The chameleon wasn't native to the region and a snake relocation expert was called to rescue it. A video released on the YouTube channel ViralHog shows the expert approaching a tray. Inside the tray, we see a green-and-red chameleon. When the expert, Bruce Ireland, reaches out to lift the chameleon from the tray, it crawls on his arms and vanishes behind the camera.

Meanwhile, we hear the man say, “Usually, I get snake calls. But today I got a call... and the gentleman found this dude crawling around the neighbourhood.”

The incident occurred in Carlsbad, California, USA, on October 11, 2021.

The video has received over 79,000 views so far on YouTube. In the caption, Mr Ireland explained: "We do snake relocation in San Diego, California, and respond to 3-5 calls per day. This particular day was very different. The caller said he had a strange lizard and asked if I would come remove it."

He said he arrived at the house to discover a panther chameleon - a reptile that's popular as an exotic pet because of its dazzling colours. 

"Upon my arrival to his home," said the rescuer, "I discovered what he had was a Panther Chameleon, bright coloured and looking more like a bag of skittles candy than a reptile. I quickly knew this was no normal call. Panther Chameleons are native only to Madagascar, so I knew it had to be someone's escaped pet."

The rescuers had to be careful while handling the reptile. But they soon realised that this chameleon was harmless. The caption read, "I wasn't at all sure how he would react to me so I was cautious. I know these animals can bite. I reached down to gauge his temperament, and he quickly climbed up my arm across my shoulder, up my face, and perched atop my hat. He was amazing."

The snake relocation experts wrote that they were still trying to find the chameleon's owners. They wrote, "We are still trying to find out who and where 'Max' came from but in the meantime, we are taking great care of him. If Max isn't claimed we plan to be his new family."

YouTube users were awestruck watching this video. One of them commented, "That is a very beautiful lizard. Keep it alive until you guys find the owner. If it's not missing you found something special."

Another user felt the reptile could be scared. “They usually turn red when they are angry, stressed, or scared. Poor dude is probably freaked out. Maybe he is someone's pet who escaped. So incredibly beautiful! I've always wanted a chameleon,” wrote the user.

One user also suggested a name for the chameleon: “Skittles, instead of Max.”

The chameleon and its colours stunned even those who weren't fond of reptiles.

One such user wrote, "I don't like snakes or lizards, anything that slithers, but his colour is magnificent."

Another user wrote, “I've never seen one so full of colour, like it was just painted on.”

A third user appreciated the “display of colours” and added, “I love the way they cloak and try to blend in for protection!”

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