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Juvenile Southeastern 5-Lined Skink

Juvenile Southeastern 5-Lined Skink. Alfred Ring Park, Gainesville, Florida. 2013.

These beautiful reptiles have stunning blue tails as juveniles, and then gradually become a more sedate brown when they mature. According to my guide on Florida Reptiles and Amphibians, there is some debate as to the reason for the blue tails. One theory is that the bright color attracts predators to a part of the body (the tail) that is less essential if eaten. The other theory is that the blue warns of danger to predators that the tails are poisonous. Either way, I think the blue tails are gorgeous!

skinkreptilegainesville parksfloridaAlfred Ring Park