Provide a large, shallow, and sturdy water dish. Otherwise, stay away from items that aren't fruits, vegetables, or insects. What is ReptiFiles®? Is this information out of date? Cork bark, wood, rocks, PVC pipes, or other hides can be used. My name is Mariah Healey, reptile husbandry specialist and consultant. Addressing the former is relatively straightforward: Simply provide your lizard with a bowl of clean, fresh water at all times. Do we need a citation? Reptile Advisor is a free resource for reptile owners of all experience levels. By doing so, you’ll have a better chance of success and be more likely to enjoy your new pet for many years. Just be sure that you learn as much as you can about these lizards before you add one to your home. Because they’re typically opportunistic and eager eaters, blue-tongued skinks are often easy to feed in captivity. Our main focus is to keep these rare gems as pure as they are in their native ranges of Australia and make what was once a dream species to keep for many, become a reality. I have worked directly with a variety of species since 2014, and ReptiFiles is where I share my research with you. This will help create a “thermal gradient,” or a range of temperatures your pet can access. Despite their generally docile nature, blue-tongued skinks will bite if... Housing the Blue-Tongued Skink. Many beginning keepers opt for... Substrate. Read more about my experience. Try to get your skink from a reputable breeder, who will have the animal's health history available. Be advised that although skinks are not aggressive, they have strong jaws and teeth, and a bite from a skink can be quite painful. If you have found something that is out of date or information that needs citing, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can fix it. Blue-tongued skink enclosures should have ambient temperatures on the cool side from 75 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. Lianne is a veterinarian, epidemiologist, and freelance writer who's written nearly 400 articles for The Spruce Pets. Handling and Bonding. Be sure that you wash your hands with soap and water after handling your pet, and avoid letting him walk on kitchen counters or anywhere else food is prepared or handled. As a bare minimum, the enclosure should measure at least 36 inches long, 18 inches wide, and 10 inches tall. You can use a variety of different enclosure types for blue-tongued skinks. And given that they’re typically hardy lizards, who’re easy to care for, they deserve special consideration by those who’re relatively new to the hobby. No matter what type of enclosure you select, be sure that it is large enough to comfortably accommodate your pets. The best way to keep the humidity level in a blue-tongued skink enclosure is by misting the tank with room-temperature water. Affectionately referred to as “garbage disposals” by some keepers, they are enthusiastic eaters with a taste for just about anything — insects, slugs/snails, roadkill, small animals, fruits, flowers, etc. Also, avoid grasping the lizard or preventing him from moving freely; instead, you’ll want to simply let him crawl back and forth on your outstretched hands and arms. Provide a couple of sturdy hiding spots since they like to burrow and hide. Be sure to measure the temperatures in your pet’s habitat and make adjustments as necessary to provide appropriate temperatures. You can use a variety of different enclosure types for blue-tongued skinks. Note that the shingleback lizard (Tiliqua rugosa) is a member of the same genus as blue-tongued skinks and shares a number of similarities with these lizards. All Tiliqua species (except the Adelaide pygmy skink, T. adelaidensis, which will not be covered in this guide) can be easily recognized by their triangular heads, heavy torpedo-shaped bodies, short legs, and distinctive blue tongue. This means your lizard will not have to choose between his preferred body temperature and security – he can enjoy both simultaneously. Blue-Tongued Skink Behavior and Temperament, Spiny-Tailed Lizard (Uromastyx): Species Profile, An Overview of Pet Reptiles for Beginners, Lighting for Your Pet Chinese Water Dragon, The 9 Best Bearded Dragon Supplies of 2020, Desert Blonde Tarantulas: Species Profile, How to Set Up a Thermal Gradient for Thermoregulation in Pet Reptiles, How to Set up a Sand Tank for Pet Hermit Crab. Blue-tongued skinks are ground dwellers with a flattened and elongated body somewhat resembling a snake in appearance. Named for their distinctive blue tongues, blue-tongued skinks are medium-sized lizards who are very popular pets among reptile enthusiasts. Blue tongue skinks make great pets from beginners to advanced experienced hobbyist. Before you purchase your blue-tongued skink, be sure there's a veterinarian in your area who specializes in exotic pets such as lizards. Why would you buy a pet if you can bond with it? Despite their generally docile nature, blue-tongued skinks will bite if they feel threatened, or hiss and expose their blue tongues (which is where they get their name). Some researchers and lizard keepers recognize subspecies of a few of these species, while others do not. Native to Australia, these calm pet lizards have distinct blue tongues (which is how they got their name), short legs and dull teeth. However, they do tend to prefer animal matter to plants. ReptileAdvisor.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Unless your home gets exceptionally cool at night (below 65 degrees), you can simply turn off the heating devices at night and allow the cage to fall to ambient temperatures. It is beyond the scope of this guide to discuss all of the things you’ll need to consider when building a blue-tongued skink enclosure, but you’ll need to ensure that you use materials that’ll hold up to the high moisture levels often associated with reptile-keeping. The western blue-tongued skink is found along the southern and western portions of the continent, and the Pygmy blue-tongued skink is native to the area surrounding Adelaide. The rest is explained here. And while you must avoid handling your new pet too frequently, as this can lead to stress, 10 minutes of handling several times a week is usually not a problem. Always consult a licensed veterinarian in case of emergency. The blue tongue skink’s tongue is widely speculated to be a defense mechanism used to ward off predators. This will help ensure your animal can determine the best temperature for his current needs, rather than being forced to remain at the temperature you decide. In fact, because these lizards are both interesting and easy to care for, they can make excellent pets for keepers of all experience levels – even first-time keepers, who’ve never cared for lizards before. Blue tongued skinks are hunted by a variety of large and medium-sized predators, most notably including birds of prey, large snakes and monitor lizards (goannas). It is also important to ensure that no screws, nails or other types of hardware protrude into the enclosure and represent a safety hazard. A combination of under-tank heating and a basking light on one side of the tank works well.
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