Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Red Eye Crocodile Skink
Scientific name : Tribolonotus gracilis
Common name : Red-Eyed Crocodile Skink
Housing size : 48'' x 24'' x 24''
Housing type : Rainforest
Adult size : total 8 - 10 inches
Care/Keeping : Keep singularly, as a pair or in a group with only one male.
Level Of Difficulty : Easy
Life Span : up to 18 years
Diet : Insectivores
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Tribolonotus gracilis is a species of skink found in New Guinea. They live in tropical forests and have also been found in human-populated areas. They are commonly known as Red-Eyed Crocodile Skinks, or, rarely, Red-Eyed Bush Crocodile Skinks.
Tribolonotus gracilis is one of the few species of lizards that vocalize when in distress. When startled, they tend to freeze and have been known to "play dead" (even when handled).
These lizards looks like a miniature crocodile rather than a species of skink. The body scales are rough, with three hard, spiky projections running along their back down to the tip of the tail. The eyes are unique with a red/orange ring around the eye socket and yellow in the corner of the eye.
Red-Eyed Crocodile Skinks can be sexed using the pores on their front feet as only males have these "pores". Females have only a single working ovary (right ovary), laying one egg at a time. The female often curls around the egg. They show tendencies for mother-child family groups. Male crocodile skinks will battle other males for females and females can be territorial as well.
Sexing of Red Eyed Crocodile Skinks is difficult. A close inspection of the underside will show a section which
looks like a belly button. Males tend to have larger scales in this area compared to females. They reach maturity in their third or forth year and live to an average life span of 12-15 years.
They are native to Indonesia and have been collected from Irian Jaya and Papua New Guinea. Red Eyed Crocodile Skinks live in moist areas close to water.