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Pygopus lepidopodus

Common Scaly-foot

Common name: Common Scaly-foot

SVL: 240mm. Total length: 800mm

Common Scaly-foot is one of five species of scaly-foot legless-lizards (Pygopus). It is mostly active at dusk or dawn (crepuscular - meaning twilight), it can be nocturnal after high daytime temperatures. It lives in long grasses, heaths, and woodlands, and is most often seen on warm mornings, foraging for food. When threatened, it flashes its thick, fleshy tongue, in an apparent mimicry of snakes. Its diet includes a variety of invertebrates such as burrowing spiders and may also eat other lizards and vegetable matter.

It is variable in colours and pattern, it occasionally is grey with black spots or sometimes coppery brown with a grey tail. Other patterns and variations occur. Prominent limb flaps may be seen on close inspection, hence the name ‘scaly-foot’.

Distribution: Widely scattered mostly in southern Australia. There are a few records in the Canberra region.

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Pygopus lepidopodus (Common Scaly-foot) at Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve - 10 Jan 1971 by GeoffRobertson
Pygopus lepidopodus (Common Scaly-foot) at Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve - 10 Jan 1971 by GeoffRobertson

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Species information

  • Pygopus lepidopodus Scientific name
  • Common Scaly-foot Common name
  • Not Sensitive
  • Local Native
  • Non-Invasive

Location information

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