Dragon Strand Caging Systems

Medium Tall Clearside Atrium System



Cage Dimensions: 30″ Wide x 23″ Deep x 48″ High

This cage combines the height and depth of the Large Clearside Enclosure with the width of the Medium Atrium Enclosure.

The Large Clearside Chameleon Enclosure has clear panels on the front, right side and back. The left side and top are screen to give you a bend of humidity retention and ventilation. The left screen side also gives you a convenient side to release feeder insects so they may run up it and stimulate the hunting response in your pet.

The clear material is a durable, flexible PVC making it almost was light as screen, but stronger.  Please note: This material is NOT acrylic!

The Technology. The clear side line uses a thick, clear PVC sheet. This PVC technology produces a flexible, but durable sheet that is as clear as glass or acrylic, almost as light as screen and more scratch resistant than acrylic. It is pulled taut, but still retains some flexibility which is advantageous when keeping animals such as Uroplatus and Rhacodactylus which aggressively launch themselves at feeders. The clear PVC absorbs the shock  and decreases the chance of snout damage.

Note: Working with the clear side material is a more involved process and so we are building to a schedule.  If you desire the benefits of a Clearside cage please email me at bill@dragonstrand.com and we will give you time of our next build. You are welcome to place an order and reserve your space in the build or else you are able to check back on the progress closer to the build date. 

Assembly Instructions:



The Medium Tall Clearside Atrium System provides and ideal platform to create a showpiece enclosure. The solid clear sides allow unrestricted use of automatic mist heads without worry of drenching house walls and furniture. The right side of the cage is surrounded by solid sides so humidity is retained. The left side and top of the cage is screen allowing for ventilation. A high to low humidity gradient may now be created right to left. The left side was chosen to be the screen side to facilitate controlled release of feeders. If you desire to release feeders in your cage to stimulate a hunting behavior it is a simple thing to crack the door open just enough to allow your hand or feeder cup in to place the feeder on the screen to let them run up.

The Medium Tall Clearside Atrium System will contain the following items standard in the box: 
1) Medium Tall Clearside Atrium cage at 30″ wide x 23″ deep x 48″ high.
2) Drainage Tray. The cage sits on top of the drainage tray to keep water away from the chameleon, poop, and escaped feeders.
3) Five Dragon Ledges. Two horizontal Dragon Ledges for each side and one horizontal Dragon Ledge for the back panel
4) Screen floor and solid white PVC floor. Thus you will have the option to use a white PVC plain floor or the screen floor. The screen floor is meant to be used with the Dragon Ledges holding all the plants on the sides. The plastic floor can be used if you desire to place plants on the floor or as a temporary floor as you are deep cleaning the screen floor.
4) Two Hydration Mounts with tubing grommets. Two Hydration Mounts (like the common misting wedges) are included which allows the mounting of industry standard misting nozzles (Mist King & Cli-Mist). The Dragon Strand Hydration Mount is different as it also includes a grommeted entry point for 1/4″ tubing which can be used to hook up an automatic watering system for the inside plants or as an entry for Exo-Terra Monsoon mist nozzles.

Care of the Clear PVC. The clear PVC material may be cared for much like acrylic. Use RO or distilled water as mineral spots will block your clear view inside the cage. When cleaning the clear panel use RO or distilled water and a soft cloth towel. Do not use wood based products such as paper towels. Although the clear PVC is not as prone to scratch as acrylic, it is still not as resistant as glass.

Accessories Included:

Dragon Ledges

The patented Dragon Ledges are anchors that permanently mount to the frame of your cage. They then transfer the weight of horizontal branches and potted plants to the strength of the cage frame. With Dragon Ledges you are able to fill your cage with plants while keeping the floor of your cage clear. The Medium Tall Atrium comes with a total of five Dragon Ledges – two for each side and one for the back. By attaching two vertical branches across the two horizontal side ledges you are able to create a strong grid that will allow up to ten pounds of branches and potted plants to be mounted at any level. This equates to about three 1 gallon potted plants.

Dragon Ledges

Dragon Ledges are easily installed at any height to accommodate your personal design. They provide the strength to hold your branches and potted plants while fading into the background.

Dragon Ledges from top to bottom

By using vertical branches you are able to create a natural looking grid which will hold about ten pounds of potted plants and branches (up to three 1 gallon pots). With this grid you will be able to design your interior with branches and plants at any level.

chameleon cage filled with plants

This plantscape and branches of this cage are supported by the Dragon Ledge anchor support system. This invention allows us chameleon keepers the ability to create truly beautiful plantscapes.

Drip Easy Drainage Tray

The Medium Tall Atrium comes standard with a Drip Easy Drainage Tray. A drainage tray goes under the cage to collect excess water. The entire cage sits on top of the drainage tray. The floor of the cage keeps the water away from the inside of the cage. This is important because the floor of the cage will have poop and escaped feeders running around. Add water to that mix and you have an unappetizing and unhealthy bacterial soup.

The system comes with two floor options. The cage comes with a solid white PVC floor while the drainage tray comes with a Drip Easy screen.

The white PVC floor is used when the cage design requires potted plants to be placed on the bottom of the cage. The heavy duty supports on the drainage tray will provide the support necessary. The floor is not water tight around the edges allowing water to seep into he drainage tray below. Small drainage holes may be drilled into the floor to aid in drainage if so desired.

The Drip Easy option is a screen panel that can replace the white PVC floor. This feature was developed by Ed Kammer of Kammerflage Kreations and is being used by Dragon Strand with his permission. It offers maximum drainage. It is the perfect partner of the Dragon Ledges as the Drip Easy screen works best with a floor clear of potted plants. And when the plants are mounted on the wall in the floating garden style, the Drip Easy works to make the floor of the cage visually disappear and not have the distraction of the “hard stop” at the bottom.

(Note: If you have an alternative drainage strategy and desire a Medium Tall Clearside Cage without the drainage tray this option is available at this link: Medium Tall Clearside Atrium Cage)

standard white floor

The standard white PVC floor provides a solid floor with which works with he support of the drainage tray to provide the strength to hold potted plants. It is also used when the health of the animal is being monitored as the white color allows poop to be noticed and studied for hydration and eating habits. Small drainage holes may be drilled in this floor to aid in drainage especially around the base of potted plants.

Drip Easy Drainage Tray

The Drip Easy floor is a screen panel which replaces the standard white PVC floor panel. The Drip Easy provides maximum drainage.

Hydration Mount

The Medium Tall Atrium Enclosures come with two hydration mounts. These mounts were designed by Dragon Strand for the special needs of chameleon keepers and the wide cage formats. The mounts are attached on the inside frame of the top panel.

This mount may be attached anywhere along the frame. This placement freedom is necessary in large cage formats to ensure that the misting reaches where it is needed. The three screw holes along the long edge gives strength to the mount.

The main mount hole is designed to accept the standard mist nozzles offered by companies such as Mist King or Cli-Mist.

The mount also includes a grommeted hole which will accept a length of 1/4″ tubing. This was specifically designed to allow you to hook up a plant watering system to your automatic mister. The two reasons why plants die in a chameleon cage are 1) light and 2) water. Light is solved by (get ready for this…) adding more light. This hydration mount allows an easy solution to the water issue. Even though their leaves receive misting, if water does not get to the soil the plant will die. If you keep forgetting to water your plants until they are dying this allows automatic watering when used with a misting system. This hole can be also be used to accept a Exo-Terra mist nozzle. The grommet is included to cover the loose screen wire produced by cutting an access hole.

Note: How many mist nozzles and drippers your misting system can drive is dependent on strength of your pump  and how many misters and drippers are attached. For example, in tests, standard 72PSI – 75PSI pumps have driven two mist nozzles and two 0.5 GPH pressure compensated drip nozzles.

Hydration Mount

The Dragon Strand Hydration Mount comes with a mount, a grommeted 1/4″ entry hole, and three mounting screws.

Hydration Mount

The mount may be affixed anywhere along the inside bottom of the top panel and allows both industry standard misting nozzles and drip system tubing to enter the cage and provide proper hydration top both chameleons and plants.

Hydration Mount

The drip system tubing can be run around the cage under cover of the plant life to not be noticed.

ficus pumila

This ficus pumila has been misted multiple times a day for months and is dying from dehydration. A drip system was installed to save this plant.

Ficus pumila recovered

After two weeks of drip hydration this ficus pumila is thriving and providing the cage with the full benefits of a live plant – natural humidity, leaf cover for the chameleon, and a natural feel to the cage appearance.

The following images show a progression of a build with the Medium Tall Clearside Atrium from bare branches to the adding of plants.

Medium Atrium Cage with Branches

First a grid of support branches and main perching branches are installed

Medium Tall Atrium with Plants

Potted plants are added to give an idea of the landscape. Once these are installed, the rest of the network are added.

Plant cover inside Medium Tall Atrium Cage

A closeup of what we want our chameleon to experience in our cages.

Substrate Tray Option and Adding Bio-Active Soil

The highest level of chameleon keeping is where the chameleon is seen as only one part of a living environment recreated in this cage. Creating a bio-active soil is one way that this is accomplished. To accommodate this we have a deep substrate tray that provide 5.5″ of soil depth. This Substrate Tray slides into the bottom of the cage through the service door entrance.

Although the substrate tray will slide in through the service door it should be seen as a semi-permanent addition. Once there is soil and pants establish themselves not only will it be very heavy, but any movement will disturb the plants. If they have grown at all then the tray will not fit back out the service door anyways!

This substrate tray gives you two drainage options.

  1. Drainage Layer – The substrate tray is water tight. Therefore standard glass vivarium techniques can be employed. This consists of a layer of hydro-balls or other clay balls  Over this there is a plastic mesh that will keep the soil above from making mud of the water that collects in the clay balls below.
  2. External Drainage – You may make use of the drainage ray that comes with the cage to give yourself active drainage, To use this, drill drainage holes in the bottom of the substrate tray and put the whole cage on top of the drainage tray. Water will flow through the substrate and collect below int he drainage tray. Thus one does not have to worry about saturating the soil. The advantage of this method is that your hydration strategy can be based on the needs of the chameleon and not have to take into consideration how much water can be stored in the soil layer.

The Substrate Tray slides into the cage and rests on the floor panel. Substrate trays are designed to hold elements that you intend for your chameleon to have access to. This is in contrast to a drainage tray which is meant to sit under the cage and contain the water you DON’T want your chameleon to have access to. In the case of a cage system that has a substrate, the drainage tray is still used to ensure no water escapes. Although the substrate tray has a close fit, the fit in the cage is not water tight. To be clear, the tray itself is water tight, but the fit inside the cage is tight, but not water tight.

Medium Tall Clearside Atrium Deep Substrate Tray

Click "add to cart" to purchase a Medium Tall Clearside Atrium

Click "add to cart" to purchase a Deep Substrate Tray

Additional information

Weight 35 lbs
Dimensions 49 × 31 × 8 in

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