Friday, May 13, 2011

Afternoon Of The Skinks…

We went to Fort Yargo State Park to photograph some wildflowers and, in the course of our walk, encountered two skinks.

The first encounter began when something with a tail appeared to slide behind a pine tree. All I saw was what looked like the tip of a tail and it didn’t go far. It was just behind the trunk or it had gone up the tree. I thought it was a snake so we circled around the tree in the hope that we could identify it and get some photographs. But it turned out that I’d seen a lizard. W found it on the tree trunk about four feet above the ground.

This looks like it’s a female. The body is distended as if it’s carrying eggs.

The second encounter was at the end of a pedestrian bridge that crosses a small inlet on the lake. It’s not uncommon to encounter skinks sunning themselves but it’s difficult to photograph them. I’m not sure this lizard was paying attention because I had stepped onto the decking before it moved.

It scampered down the rail support and stopped. I don’t think it really wanted to leave its sunny spot. The ‘lines’ are evident in this photograph.

It dropped down onto the ground but, after I moved to get a photograph from a different angle, it scampered under the bridge out of sight.

These were quite large skinks; I suspect they are Five-lined Skinks (Eumeces fasciatus). It’s always a treat to see these lizards although it’s surprising to see two in one day.

Click on an image to view a larger image

Identification resource:

- Lizards of Georgia and South Carolina: Five-lined Skink (Eumeces fasciatus)

Related post:

- Southeastern Five-lined Skink (Eumeces inexpectatus)

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