Squamata (amphisbaenians, lizards and snakes)
Habitat & Range
Blue-tongued skinks can be found in warm desert and sandy regions of Australia and New Guinea. They typically burrow beneath the surface layer to escape the heat and hide from predators and potential prey.
The most distinguishing feature of a blue-tongued skink is their large, bright blue tongue, which is used as a defense mechanism. Their scales are shiny, overlapping and smooth with a fish-like appearance. The ventral side is usually light grey while the dorsal side has numerous color variations but generally has a drab brown, green and grey appearance. They have long thick tails and short stubby legs.
Blue-tongued skinks are omnivores and typically feed on insects, fruits vegetables, grubs and other reptiles.
Reproduction & Lifespan
Blue-tongued skinks are ovoviviparous, meaning that they have internally hatching eggs and live birth. Mating usually occurs in the spring and results in 10 to 15 young.
The average lifespan of a blue-tongued skin ranges 10 to 15 years. Fantastic Fact Spread Thin
Aside from using their blue tongues as a coy to trick predators into thinking they are poisonous, the blue-tongued skink can reduce its size by up to one inch. Their flexible ribcage is responsible for the size deduction, which allows them to hide under rocks and in small crevices.
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