Delicate Skink Lampropholis delicata

Lizards of Victoria series


The Delicate Skink, Lampropholis delicata, has a ground colour of chocolate brown, with a bronze coloured stripe, commencing on the shoulder and continuing to the base of the tail. It has a snout vent length of up to 40 mm.

Delicate Skink, Lampropholis delicata

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

Distribution and habitat

The Delicate Skink has a disjunct distribution from East Gippsland, through the Melbourne area to the Little Desert, and southwards to the Nelson district. It is found in open forests.


This sun loving species is active by day and feeds on small invertebrates. The females lay 2-6 eggs in a communal nest which can contain up to 250 eggs. Females often produce more than one clutch per season.

Further Reading

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

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

Comments (3)

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Heidi 13 November, 2010 23:24
I think I had aliitle del skink which I am convinced he was playing dead as my son loved him and was holding him for a long time so I took him off my son, and went outside to free him hoping he is still alive as I even thought he was dead and what did he basically do? little lizzy bounced off my hand so excited to be free, I was just wrapped he was alive...Do u think they can play dead?
Discovery Centre 22 November, 2010 15:23

Hi Heidi, 

Yes this is a pretty common response when a lizard is held – as soon as they feel a release in the pressure of being held they will make a rapid movement to escape. I assume it is an innate response to being caught by a predator – play dead until the predator relaxes its grip and then make a sudden, unexpected, escape.

Trent 17 December, 2010 02:58
Hello. Similar situation here however the Lampropholis delicata in my home won't stop playing dead. He has seemingly done so for 3 days now and he has had ample opportunity to escape. The only concern is that I discovered him under our bath mat. He was motionless but I could still see his heart beating. He has no visible sign of injury however he only moves very small distances very sporadically and seemingly without any sense of direction and only when I'm not nearby. The other thing I have noticed most recently is that his lower lids are covering his eyes. Could it be that he is blind? Please advise what I should do.
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