Green Tree Monitors As Pets

 Green Tree Monitors As Pets

Are Green Tree Monitors Good Pets?


Green tree monitors are one of the smaller monitor lizards that can be great pets with time. Proper handling and patience will be very rewarding in the end for you and your monitor. They need a lot of space to grow and they require a lot of maintenance. 

Temperament and Handling


Before buying a green tree monitor, it is important to know what to expect with handling and temperament. Even though these animals are very curious, they can be very fearful of their owners initially. Naturally they will want to run and hide or inflate their throats to look bigger.


If you want to establish trust, you must avoid grabbing your tree monitor. There will come a day when they will let you hold them, but not right away. The younger the monitor, the easier it is to work on handling as well. Just place your hand inside their enclosure and wait for them to come to you. Have them watch you put food in their enclosure as well. 


Many interactions need to be quiet and calm too. Try to be as still as possible while your baby monitor investigates you. When your monitor can learn to trust you, only handle them for about 10 minutes at a time. If you are interacting with them outside of their enclosure, 10 minutes should be the limit because they are sensitive to humidity conditions. 



Green tree monitors will grow to be about three feet in length at the most. They are also arboreal, which means that they thrive in trees. Their enclosures need to be large enough for them to have plenty of climbing space. An acceptable sized enclosure would be six feet tall and four feet long. 


The enclosure needs to be well ventilated and provide a lot of accessories for climbing. Branches and vines will need to fill the inside. Hiding places are also important to have within the enclosure. One of the hides could be a nest box. 


The enclosure also needs to be able to hold in humidity. Cork panels on the walls of the enclosure can help. Substrate like soil without fertilizers, moss, and a sand mix will hold in humidity. Rocks and pebbles are not ideal because they won’t hold in the humidity and could accidentally be ingested. 

Temperature And Humidity


Green tree monitors are very sensitive when it comes to the proper humidity levels. They can become very sick quickly if they are not in the proper conditions. 


Humidity needs to be between 70%-100% and the temperature should be 85-95 degrees Fahrenheit. The basking spot needs to be up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. 


Keeping humidity levels this high can be difficult if you are inexperienced. Poor humidity will lead to improper shedding and dehydration. You should lightly mist them about twice a day and spray around the inside of the enclosure as well. They will drink the water as you lightly mist them too. 


One other tool you can use to keep humidity this high is to use a fogger. 



Tree monitors are very active lizards which means that they need to eat every single day. Their main diet are insects. They can eat over a dozen insects a day and will also eat crickets, hornworms, super worms, and roaches. 


All insects need to be store-bought because wild insects carry parasites. The insects also need to be gut loaded and dusted with reptile calcium powder.  Gut loaded insects provide extra nutrients and the calcium will help prevent metabolic bone disease. 


A UVA/UVB light is also required to help with their diet. The UVB light mimics the nutrients from the sun helps them create vitamin D3. 



There are not very many captive bred green tree monitors because they are expensive to have and the maintenance is constant. One monitor can be up to $1,000 US dollars. That cost doesn’t count the enclosure, food, lighting, and enclosure accessories.


You really need to have experience raising delicate reptiles to be able to have a tree monitor, especially if you are going to be putting a lot of money into it.

Wrapping Up


Tree monitors are very beautiful and curious lizards that can make great pets. After gaining trust for their owners, they won’t mind hanging out with your for a few minutes. Caring for them can be costly and they are very delicate. A green tree monitor is right for you if you have a lot of time to dedicate to maintenance. 

Jade Messieh

Proud bearded dragon, tortoise, crested gecko, and green tree python mom. I've always been passionate about animals and hope to help other reptile & amphibian enthusiasts along their journey!

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