Five-lined Skink


Five-Lined Skink  (Plestiodon fasciatus ) - Endangered

The Five-lined Skink is the only native species of lizards in Ontario. Their coloration changes as the grow older. Juveniles are black with five cream stripes down the back and a bright blue or blue-grey tail. As they mature, their colours change to orangy bronze, although often the stripes are still visible.


If a predator catches the skink by the tail, it will detach and wiggle about. This will distract the would-be predator while the skink makes its escape. The tail will grow back, but probably not as long as the original. If this happens late in the season, it could spell trouble for the skink as the tail contains fat reserves relied upon to survive the winter.         


These lizards eat a wide variety of invertebrates, such as insects, spiders and worms, and track prey by smell.


Skinks will hunt during the day, but are alway close to hiding places. Any sign of danger and they dash to the safety of a log or rock. They are alway alert and are usually out of sight before we can get a glimpse of them. 

Five-lined Skink is listed as Endangered in Ontario. The population has been drastically declined due to habitat loss as most of the natural landscape has been converted to agricultural and urban uses.