Black Rock Skink Egernia saxatilis intermedia

Lizards of Victoria series


As its name suggests, the Black Rock Skink, Egernia saxatilis intermedia, is very dark in colour, with blunt keels on the back scales. Snout vent length to 100 mm.

Photo of Black Rock Skink, Egernia saxatilis intermedia

Black Rock Skink
Photographer: Peter Robertson / Source: Wildlife Profiles Pty. Ltd.

Distribution and habitat

The Black Rock Skink is widely distributed throughout eastern and southern Victoria and lives in both rocky and timbered habitats.


This species is active by day and feeds on invertebrates. Females give birth to 2–3 live young.

Further Reading

Cogger, H. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Reed Books.

Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2003. Reptiles of Australia. Princeton University Press.

Comments (15)

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micah bonnici 13 November, 2010 17:55
hey do u no any possible bushland reserves where these guys could be in possible abundance?
Lee 6 March, 2011 20:48
Hey, I just went for a walk today in the Cathedral State Park (just past Buxton) and saw a heap of these cool guys. The walk I did was to the north jawbone peak, and it was on the peak where it's quite rocky that I saw them. Happy Hunting!
riley flick 24 March, 2011 20:25
Hi, i am from Coffs Harbour and i found some off these under a sheet off tin near a creek. They were interesting as i have never seen them before so i caught them and released them at my house.
micah bonnici 8 May, 2011 12:21
riley flick they were not black rock skinks as the intermedia subspecies northern limit of distribution is around Newnes Plateau and the saxatilis subspecies is restricted to the Warrumbungle Mountains area. What you probably saw was a Egerniamcpheei which is similar looking species which its southern limit of distribution is around Barrington Tops in NSW.
Paul Macartney 12 February, 2017 14:55
Interesting. There are also Brown rock skinks and brown tree skinks, that all look VERY similar. The black rock skink, has a orange reddish/copper underbelly. I think this is the main id of these from a layman like me. How do you tell the females from the males just by observations?
Michelle poole 15 December, 2011 20:55
How can you tell what sex a black rock skink is? ??
Discovery Centre 21 December, 2011 10:53

Hi Michelle - we have checked with our expert keepers from our Live Exhibits department on this, and they have replied with the following information:

Black rock skinks are very difficult to sex. There is a method known as hemipenal trans-illumination where a bright light is shone through the base of the tail allowing the presence or absence of the hemipenes to be observed. For more on this you would need to search the net - Hemipenal trans-illumination by Danny Brown.

Hope this helps

Carole Davies 23 February, 2013 19:58
We have a gorgeous big black Skink living in our Stable which is next to the Chook pen. I have noticed he goes into the Chook pen and at first I thought he was taking the Bantam eggs.. but then I read that he in omiverious, so I think he is quite happy eating the leafy vegie and fruit scraps I empty into the Bantams each day. He is really beautiful, I have been able to photograph him sitting on top of timber in the stable and talk to him. Don't know if skinks can hear, but he disappears, when I open the stable door.. Just love him hope he stays around as I have an Organic garden just nearby and he is very welcome
Adrian 1 October, 2014 04:41
Carole thank you . I was thinking on getting one now I know thank. Adrian
Jennifer 29 November, 2015 13:26
I'm from a small town called Cessnock which is located in the Hunter Valley. Now it says these little guys are userly seen in the top of NSW so why am I seeing them in my back yard?
Discovery Centre 30 November, 2015 13:19
Hi Jennifer - whilst our infosheet gives the distribution information for Victoria, the Australian Reptile Online Database distribution map would suggest that it might be found near your area. If you can take a photograph of the skinks in your yard, you're welcome to send it to us or a museum in your area for a more positive identification.
Ray W 21 January, 2016 12:04
I have a family of at least 5 lizards living in rocks on my property near Bacchus Marsh. I believe they are black rock skinks but some are tan coloured and some are as large as a full grown blue tongue (although a little slimmer and much faster moving).
Leigh Roswen 31 January, 2016 22:04
I photographed two skinks outside Eden NSW at Boyds Tower. I think they must be black rock skinks because they have the dull defined scales but have a more tan belly and bit more of a tan fleck. They were on light motley coloured rock so may be adaptation. Do they vary in colour much? Would like to send photos for you to confirm.
Discovery Centre 1 February, 2016 13:39
Hi Leigh - feel free to send your images to and we will forward them on to our reptile specialists.
Ally Barber 28 April, 2016 16:56
My pet black rock skink hiccup passed away late last year.. im devastated and wanting another one. He was a wonderful and loving pet. He used to hide under my tshirt collar on cold days
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