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Great Plains Skink
Great Plains Skink
Reptile. The Great Plains skink is the largest North American skink, a kind of lizard. Skinks are terrestrial (living on land) and accomplished burrowers, often forming dugouts under rocks or similar cover where they spend most of the time. In late April, Great Plains skinks emerge from their winter dormancy. The female skink remains deep underground with her eggs from May until they hatch in August. After the eggs hatch, the mother cleans the hatchlings and protects them from predators; very unusual behavior for a reptile. The skink's tail breaks off easily, but it grows back.
Scientific Name Lifespan
Eumeces obsoletus Up to 6 years
Carnivore. Grasshoppers, crickets, beetles, spiders, and caterpillars.
Predators and Threats
Racers (snakes), broad-winged hawks, and several small mammals.
Open plains and rolling grasslands with few trees and scattered rocks; North America: Southern Nebraska to Arizona and southern Texas.