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Gidgee skink

Egernia stokesii


The Gidgee skink is a shy spiny-tailed Australian lizard. It lives in large groups which makes it easier for the group to spot the approach of predators such as dingoes, cats, foxes and snakes.

If a predator is seen, the skink will hide in a hollow tree or between rocks. If the attacker is persistent, the skink will inhale air and blow itself up wedging itself into its hiding place. Its spiny tail also makes it difficult for the predator to pull the skink out. Acacia trees in Australia are known as Gidgee trees where lots of these skinks are found. Its body length can be up to 195 millimetres.

This species can be viewed in the zoo’s Reptile House.

  Fun fact Can make its body swell up to wedge itself between rocks when under threat.

Animal class

Reptile

Conservation status

Not yet assessed however habitat destruction is an increasing threat

Habitat

Woodland – found in shrubland and open woodland in semi-arid Australia

Population

Decreasing

Diet

Omnivore – easts mostly fruit and leaves but will also eat small invertebrates