Schneider's Skink

Eumeces schneideri

السقنقور البربري/أم الحيات

Status: Common

Schneider's Skink belongs to the Scincidae family in the Sauria (lizards) sub-order of the order Squamata (scaled reptiles). It is the largest representative of the Scincidae family present in Palestine, males reaching a maximum total length (body + tail) of 50 cm. Schneider's Skink is one of the most colorful reptiles in Palestine. Young specimens display reddish, white and black spots arranged in rows along the back, fading towards usually by the middle of the tail. These markings and coloration persist in adulthood in most of the females; by contrary, in males usually the white and black spots disappear with sexual maturation, whilst the reddish spots grow in size and intensify in the depth of their color. The ground color of the body and tail is a golden tan or brown, hence one of the common names for this lizard is Golden Skink. The diet of Schneider's Skink consists of invertebrates and small vertebrates (mainly, lizards). It digs deep burrows as refuge from enemies and from bad weather, but readily hides under rocks and boulders. It is oviparous (the young hatch from eggs), hatchlings usually appear during late summer and early autumn. Schneider's Skink inhabits parts of the Middle East.

Conservation status – least concern (LC).

In Palestine – Common in most Mediterranean habitats, and in some semi-arid ("semi-desert") habitats.

Sites: Umm at-Tut, Beitillu, Wadi Al-Quff nature reserves.