Wildlife - Our Animals - Reptile - Shingleback 1120x350

Shingleback Skink

Shingleback Skink

Check out Australia Zoo’s Shingleback Skink!

Here at Australia Zoo, we are home to a species of skink whose tail looks like its head, and head looks like its tail – the shingleback skink! Keep your eyes peeled for our Wandering Wildlife Team for your chance to get up close and personal with these adorable “double-headed” skinks.


Two Shingleback Skinks laying their heads on each other.


These adorable reptiles have no shortage of nicknames, often referred to as the two-headed lizard, pinecone lizard, sleepy lizard, bobtail or the stumpy tailed lizard. They are closely related to the well-known blue-tongue lizard and are one of the largest skink species in Australia!


Two Shingleback Skinks on a green leaf.


They are true-blue Aussies, found throughout arid regions of South and Western Australia! You might be wondering why their tail looks like their head? This is a defense mechanism used to confuse their predators. If under threat, they will wiggle their tail to draw the attention away from their head. A shingleback’s tail is fat storage and if a predator takes their tail, they can grow it back. Crikey, that’s cool!


An Adult Shingleback Skink with two small Shingleback Skinks.


These monogamous skinks will mate for life and bear one to two live young every year.  Shinglebacks are omnivores and spend daylight hours in search of vegetation such leaves, fruits, flowers and berries, as well as snails and slugs.


Due to their ability to camouflage in the arid Australian environment and the ability to elude predators, they are a thriving species. The shingleback skink is considered a species of least concern. You little ripper!

  • Class of animal icon


  • Genus of animal icon


  • Species of animal icon


  • height of animal icon

    Up to 45 centimetres

  • weight of animal icon

    Up to 600 grams

  • diet of animal icon


  • gestation of animal icon

    90 - 120 days