Growing up to 36 cm long, the Kimberley Crevice-skink belongs to a group of large lizards in the genus Egernia, which have complex social lives and live communally in extended family groups.
AWC ecologists in the Kimberley carried out the first ecological research into the Kimberley Crevice-skink (Egernia douglasi). The skinks had been recorded from just a handful of sites prior to AWC’s work, with just a single sighting made in the past 30 years. Since 2012, AWC has discovered new populations of the skinks at Charnley River-Artesian Range, Mornington, and Yampi. Most were found by deploying camera traps along the edge of rocky ranges.
Further fieldwork being undertaken will investigate why the Kimberley Crevice-skink has such a restricted range, and whether poor fire regimes constitute a threat to the species.
Being one of Australia’s most elusive lizards, very little is known about the habitat preferences and behaviour of the Kimberley Crevice-skink. Preliminary work suggests that fruit forms part of their diet, and they appear to be active only during the warmer months of the wet season (September – April). The skinks were recorded moving over short distances, and likely have a relatively small home range.
Charnley River-Artesian Range has a vital role to play in protecting and restoring the endangered wildlife of northern Australia.
Mornington – Marion Downs is a model for conservation in northern Australia, protecting 580,772 hectares of the iconic Kimberley region.
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