The Blue Tongue Skink and How to Care for It

22nd Dec 2015

The blue tongue skink is aptly named after its large, bold, blue tongue that it uses to warn off potential enemies. Native to Australia and Southeast Asia, the blue tongue skink is also known as the blue-tongued lizard and has an elongated body that somewhat resembles a snake, with the exception of short arms and legs. The adult blue tongue skink can range between 18 and 24 inches long, and if properly cared for, they can live from 15 to 20 years long, and even longer in some cases.

Blue tongue skinks use their skin to help them camouflage themselves in the outdoors. They usually hide just under the ground in order to not be seen by potential predators. Blue tongue skinks, or blue tongues, as they are also known, birth live babies and do not lay eggs. These reptiles are omnivores, eating plants as well as meat, and they will eat other animals dead or alive. Blue tongues are becoming one of the more popular reptiles to own as pets because of its unique feature of a blue tongue. Because of its popularity, it is domesticated and bred in captivity.

To care for the blue tongue skink, as a baby they should be housed in 20-gallon aquariums that have full-screen tops. As an adult, their home should be at least 36 inches long, 18 inches wide, and 10 inches tall, again with a full-screen top. Regardless of age, the lizards should be housed singly as they like to have their own space. Blue-tongues also like warmth and should be exposed to light for about 12 hours per day. Keep their temperature at about 80 degrees Fahrenheit on one end of their enclosure, and about 95 degrees on the other end.

For feeding, blue tongues can live off of any diet, and they are likely to eat anything you give them. However, for a more healthy, active blue tongue, it is best to feed them a well-rounded diet consisting of meats, fruits, and vegetables. Premium dog and cat foods, along with a popular favorite,  dubia roaches, will provide protein while greens, mango, and hibiscus flowers fulfill their fruit and vegetable needs.

Blue skinks are a great reptile to own as a pet because they are super easy to care for and do not require extensive care. Because of its easygoing and low-maintenance characteristics, it is becoming one of the most popular household reptiles.

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