Posted May 28, 2020 in New Arrivals
Skink born at Colchester Zoo!
We are pleased to share the news that on the 29th April one of our female Soloman Islands skink’s gave birth to a single offspring!
Unlike most other reptiles, the Soloman Islands skink, also known as the Prehensile-tailed skink, are live-bearers rather than laying eggs. The female gives birth to one, occasionally two, offspring after a pregnancy of around 6 – 8 months. When they are born they are surprisingly large compared to the adults measuring around 10-12 inches!
The youngster will be cared for by the group of skinks within their territory with mum being particularly attentive during the early weeks and months of the youngster’s life which again is quite an unusual trait for a reptile.
Colchester Zoo’s new arrival has been quite adventurous, happily exploring the whole enclosure on its own already, as well as spending time with mum, our other female and male. It will be a while before this youngster will be sexed by its keepers but we will be sure to update you in the near future.
Soloman Islands skinks are the largest known species of skink and can reach 81cm in length from nose to tail, living for around 25 years. They are a tree dwelling species and as herbivores their diet consists of fruit, vegetables and plants. The Prehensile-tailed skink is found on the Solomon Islands (hence it also being known as the Solomon Island Skink), which are situated northeast of Australia in the south pacific.