Australian Lizards - photos
About Australian Lizards
There are over 520 species of lizards in Australia and five main families which are listed below:
Geckos are usually small egg-laying lizards. They have sticky feet which
allows these lizards to walk up and down smooth surfaces like glass. They are noctural and produce a chirping sound which is one of many animal sounds you can hear at night in tropical
Legless or Snake lizards
Legless or Snake lizards are endemic to Australia. They lack potruding limbs so look similar to snakes, but unlike snakes they have ears and a tail. They also have a fleshy, tongue, while snakes have a forked toungue. Like geckos, some species make chirping
Dragons usually have long back limbs, small, scales, and large heads. They lay eggs and live in the warmer areas of Australia. Notable dragon species in Australia include the Thorny
Devil which as the name suggests, are covered in thorns; and the Frilled Lizard that stands on its hind legs, opens its mouth, and extends a flap of red and orange scaled skin that encircles its head.
Goannas or Monitor lizards
Goannas or Monitor lizards have long, pointy heads and long, forked tongues. Species range greatly in size from the short-tailed monitor at around 20 cm to the Perentie which can grow over 2 metres. They lay eggs, are carnivorious, and possess sharp teeth and claws for catching prey.
Skinks are the most diverse group and the largest family of lizards in Australia and the
world. They make up about half of all Australian lizard species. Skinks generally have glossy scales, small legs, and enlarged head shields. They appear to move more like snakes than other lizards and some species have no limbs. One notable skink genus are blue-tongued skinks which not only have a blue tongue, but have some of the largest skink species in the world.