T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Skink (Shingleback) Tiliqua rugosa

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Scincidae
Genus: Tiliqua
Species: T. rugosa
Binomial name: Tiliqua rugosa
Synonyms: Trachydosaurus rugosus
Common names: Shingleback lizard, Bobtail, Stump-tailed skink, Bogeye, Pinecone lizard, Sleepy lizard, Stumpy Tail Lizard,

Tiliqua rugosa is a short-tailed, slow-moving species of blue-tongued skink found in Australia. There are four subspecies. Three of the four recognised subspecies are found on the plains west of the Great Dividing Range where rainfall is low and throughout the semi-arid habitats of inland Australia as well as coastal parts of Western Australia and South Australia. The fourth subspecies are found in Eastern Australia. 
They are rare in New Zealand with a few in zoos and in private collections.

Tiliqua rugosa is bulkiest of the blue-tongue lizards. They can have a total length up to 410 mm, of which 340 mm are head + body. The shingleback has a very large head and a short, wide, stumpy tail that resembles its head, this may confuse predators. It has a heavily armoured body with large rough scales.
Individuals can be found in various colours, ranging from dark brown to cream.
The tail also contains fat reserves, which are drawn upon during brumation in winter. Brumation is a term used for the hibernation-like state that cold-blooded animals utilise during very cold weather This skink is an omnivore; it eats animals and plants. Their teeth are large and they have strong jaw muscles so they can crush snail shells and beetles. They may bite if picked up. A bite from an adult can cause pain, break the skin and leave a bruise but there is no venom and hence no long-term ill effect.



A shingleback in a threat display.


Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/