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Tasmanian fuel reduction program an Australian first

23/03/2015

Tasmanian communities will be safer from the threat of bushfires, with a ground-breaking new $28.5 million program of fuel reduction burns announced today.More

Three Capes Track hut contracts awarded

19/03/2015

Two Tasmanian companies have been awarded contracts worth a total of $6.5 million to construct the huts on the Three Capes Track.More

Temporary access changes for The Nut

18/03/2015

Access to the tracks at the summit of The Nut State Reserve at Stanley will be by the chairlift only, from Monday 23 March to Friday 27 March, 2015, due to safety works being undertaken on the Zig Zag track.

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Three-lined skink, Acritoscincus duperreyi

Three-lined skink

The three-lined skink is a strongly striped, egg-laying lizard most commonly found amongst coastal heaths and in warm, sunny areas.

Description

A long-bodied skink with fairly short limbs. This species normally has a clearly defined pattern of stripes running lengthways down the body, including a black, sharply-defined stripe along the upper sides. The back may be various shades of brown or grey, usually with a black stripe down the spine. Three-lined skinks often (but not always) have a pinkish-orange flush on the throat. The head and body length is between 22-80 mm in length. Females grow slightly longer than males. This species is superficially similar to the tussock skinks in the genus Pseudemoia, but can be distinguished from these because the three-lined skink has a fused frontoparietal shield and its body is longer relative to its limbs. This species is also recorded in the literature as Bassiana duperreyi.

Ecology

Three-lined skinks are a common species in coastal heaths and dry woodlands, where they shelter amongst grass tussocks, in leaf litter and in dense ground cover. This species feeds on insects and other small invertebrates. 

Breeding

Three-lined skink

Three-lined skinks are one of the few egg-laying (oviparous) lizards occuring in Tasmania. Mating occurs from November to December, and 2-10 eggs are laid in late December. This species is a communal egg layer, and as many as 64 eggs have been recorded from a communal site. Three-lined skinks lay their eggs in loose soil beneath rocks and logs. Upon hatching, juveniles have a head and body length of 22-33 mm.

Distribution

Being an egg-laying species this lizard is generally found in warmer environments in the north and east of Tasmania. Three lined skinks have been recorded from the following Tasmanian islands: Babel Island, Big Dog Island, Flinders Island, Little Dog Island and Maria Island. The species is also found in South-east South Australia, Victoria and the highlands of southern NSW.

Status

Secure.

Threats

This species is subject to predation by cats and the introduced laughing kookaburra. The healthlands where three-lined skinks occur are sensitive to changes in fire frequency.