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American five-lined skink

Plestiodon fasciatus


I have a fondness for these lizards. I've seen a mama skink guard her nest everyday at the shack where I work. I'll put out a bottlecap of water and watch her drink from it. She never seems to care if I'm there as if she knows I pose no threat. Per wiki - Female five-lined skinks demonstrate high levels of parental care which reduces egg mortality. Females exhibit several brooding positions of variant contact levels with the body placed beside, over, through, or in a coil around the eggs. Brooding position varies according to soil moisture. Maternal body contact increases at lower moisture levels potentially reducing transpirational loss of the eggs. In communal nests, females may alternate foraging and guarding of the nests, leaving eggs protected at all times. Females may also urinate in the nests and turn eggs to maintain humidity. In addition, females transfer heat from basking through body contact. Any eggs displaced from the nest are retrieved by head or snout rolling, and rotten eggs are eaten. lifespan is atleast 6 years, some suspect even up to 10 years.

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1 Comment

armadeus.4 4 years ago

Lovely pics! Thank you for the information and thank you for sharing your story :)

Spotted by

Houston, Texas, USA

Lat: 29.76, Long: -95.45

Spotted on May 11, 2015
Submitted on Nov 9, 2015

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