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Egernia stokesii (GRAY, 1845)

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Egerniinae (Tiliquini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
SubspeciesEgernia stokesii badia STORR 1978
Egernia stokesii stokesii (GRAY 1845)
Egernia stokesii zellingi DE VIS 1884 
Common NamesE: Gidgee Spiny-tailed Skink, Gidgee Skink, Stoke’s Skink
G: Stachelschwanzskink 
SynonymSilubosaurus stokesii GRAY 1845: 105
Silubosaurus zellingi DE VIS 1884
Egernia stokesii — GLAUERT 1960: 76
Egernia stokesii stokesii — STORR 1978: 156
Egernia stokesii aethiops STORR 1978: 156
Egernia stokesii — COGGER 1983: 160
Egernia stokesii — COGGER 2000: 472
Egernia stokesii — DOUGHTY et al. 2011

Egernia stokesii badia STORR 1978
Egernia stokesii badia STORR 1978: 158
Egernia stokesii badia — WILSON & SWAN 2013: 262

Egernia stokesii zellingi DE VIS 1884
Silubosaurus zellingi DE VIS 1884: 53
Egernia stokesii zellingi — WILSON & SWAN 2013: 262 
DistributionAustralia (New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia)

stokesii: Western Australia; Type locality: Houtman Abrolhos, Western Australia.

aethiops: Baudin Island, Shark Bay, Western Australia; Type locality: Baudin Island.

badia: mainland Western Australia; Type locality: Rothsay.

zellingi: E Australia; Type locality: Barcoo, Queensland.  
ReproductionViviparous. This is one of the few reptile species in which monogamy has been observed (Chapple 2003). 
TypesLectotype: BMNH 1946.8.9.74, Designation by Wells &Wellington (1985). Syntypes: BMNH 1946.8.9.74-76, BMNH 1946.8.9.77-82 (W. A.), BMNH (W. A.)
Holotype: QM J253, from Barcoo, Qld. [zellingi]
Holotype: WAM R25731, from Baudin Is., Freycinet Estuary, in 26° 31’ S, 113° 39’ E, W. A. [aethiops]
Holotype: WAM R29590, from Rothsay, in 29° 18’ S, 116° 54’ E, W. A. [badia] 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (stokesii): A moderately large member of the E. cunninghami group with tail very short, depressed, strongly spinose and non-fragile. Further distinguishable from E. depressa by dorsals with one or two weak spines and supracaudals with one strong spine, presence of enlarged nuchals, nasals separated, and more numerous upper labials (usually 7 or 8, vs usually 6) (Storr 1978: 155).

Diagnosis (aethiops): A dark, relatively small subspecies of E. stokesii, differing from E. s. stokesii in almost total lack of colour pattern, short snout, weak postnarial groove, narrowly separated nasals, and very small first supraocular (when not fused to very large second supraciliary) (Storr 1978: 157).

Diagnosis (badia): A large reddish brown sUbspecies of E. stokesii with whitish ventral surfaces (Storr 1978: 158).

Description (stokesii): Glauert 1960: 76 
CommentSynonymy: COGGER 1983 listed all 3 subspecies as synonyms of E. stokesii.

Max SVL 161 mm (aethiops), 194 mm (badia), 83 mm (zellingi), 158 mm (stokesii). 
Etymologynamed after Admiral John Lort Stokes, officer of the British Royal Navy who served on the HMS Beagle under the command of Robert Fitzroy at the same time when Charles Darwin made his voyage. 
  • Baines, Holly; Beatrice Gini, Yu-Mei Chang & Christopher J. Michaels 2020. Dominance and aggression in captive gidgee skinks (Egernia stokesii). The Herpetological Journal 30: 83-92 - get paper here
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Bull, C.M., C.L. Griffin, E.J. Lanham & G.R. Johnston 2000. Recognition of Pheromones from Group Members in a Gregarious Lizard, Egernia stokesii Journal of Herpetology 34 (1): 92-99. - get paper here
  • Chapple, D.G. 2003. Ecology, life history, and behavior in the Australian scincid genus Egernia, with comments on the evolution of complex sociality in lizards. Herpetological Monographs 17: 145-180 - get paper here
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Cogger, H.G. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 6th ed. Ralph Curtis Publishing, Sanibel Island, 808 pp.
  • Couper, P., Covacevich, J., Amey, A. & Baker, A. 2006. The genera of skinks (Family Scincidae) of Australia and its island territories: diversity, distribution and identification. in: Merrick, J.R., Archer, M., Hickey, G.M. & Lee, M.S.Y. (eds.). Evolution and Zoogeography of Australasian Vertebrates. Australian Scientific Publishing, Sydney, pp. 367-384
  • de Vis, C. W. 1884. On new Australian lizards. Proc. Roy. Soc. Queensland 1: 53-56 - get paper here
  • Doughty, Paul; Luke Kealley, and Stephen C. Donnellan 2011. Revision of the Pygmy Spiny-tailed Skinks (Egernia depressa species-group) from Western Australia, with descriptions of three new species. Rec. West. Austr. Mus. 26: 115–137
  • Duffield, G.A. & C.M. Bull 1998. Seasonal and Ontogenetic Changes in the Diet of the Australian Skink Egernia stokesii Herpetologica 54 (3): 414-419. - get paper here
  • Gardner, M.G.; Bull, C.M.; Cooper, S.J.B.; Duffield, G.A. 2000. Microsatellite mutations in litters of the Australian lizard Egernia stokesii. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 13 (3): 551-560 - get paper here
  • Glauert, L. 1960. Herpetological miscellanea. XII. The family Scincidae in Western Australia. Pt. 1. The genera Tiliqua, Trachysaurus and Egernia. Western Australian Naturalist 7 (3): 67-77 - get paper here
  • Gray, J. E. 1845. Catalogue of the specimens of lizards in the collection of the British Museum. Trustees of die British Museum/Edward Newman, London: xxvii + 289 pp. - get paper here
  • How, RA, Cowan, MA, Teale, RJ, Schmitt, LH. 2020. Environmental correlates of reptile variation on the Houtman Abrolhos archipelago, eastern Indian Ocean. J Biogeogr. 47: 2017– 2028 - get paper here
  • Knauf, S. 2006. Zur Haltung und Nachzucht des australischen Stachelschwanzskinks Egernia stokesii stokesii (GRAY 1845) mit Anmerkungen zum Fütterungsmanagement. Reptilia (Münster) 11 (61): 78-83 - get paper here
  • Knauf, S. 2006. Zur Haltung und Nachzucht des Australischen Stachelschwanzskinks, Egernia stokesii stokesii (GRAY 1845), mit Anmerkungen zum Fütterungsmanagement. Reptilia (Münster) 11 (60): 55-59 - get paper here
  • Knauf, S. 2007. Care and captive breeding of the Gidgee Skink, Egernia stokesii stokesii. Reptilia (GB) (51): 61-69 - get paper here
  • Licht, P., W.R. Dawson & V.H. Shoemaker 1966. Heat resistance of some Australian lizards Copeia 1966 (2): 162-169. - get paper here
  • Pianka, E. R. 1972. Zoogeography and speciation of Australian desert lizards: an ecological perspective. Copeia 1972 (1): 127-144 - get paper here
  • Schröder, M. & Macina, S. 2003. Die Haltung und Nachzucht des Stachelschwanzskinks Egernia stokesii stokesii (GRAY 1845). Sauria 25 (4): 7-14 - get paper here
  • Shine, R. 2013. Primer: Reptiles. Current Biology 3 (6): R227–R231 - get paper here
  • Storr G M 1978. The genus Egernia (Lacertilia, Scincidae) in Western Australia. Rec. West. Aust. Mus. 6 (2): 147-187 - get paper here
  • Storr, G. M., Smith, L. A. & Johnstone, R. E. 1981. Lizards of Western Australia. I. Skinks. Perth: University of Western Australia Press and Western Australian Museum, 200 pp.
  • Storr, G. M.; L. A. Smith, and R. E. Johnstone 1999. Lizards of Western Australia. I. Skinks. Revised Edition. Western Australian Museum
  • Swan, G.; Sadlier, R.; Shea, G. 2017. A field guide to reptiles of New South Wales. Reed New Holland, 328 pp.
  • While, Geoffrey M.;, David G. Chapple, Michael G. Gardner, Tobias Uller, and Martin J. Whiting 2015. Egernia lizards. Current Biology 25 (14): R593–R595, doi:10.1016/j.cub.2015.02.070 - get paper here
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
  • Zwinenberg, A. J. 1978. Stekelskinken de "Zindelijke" hagedissen van Australie. Blijdorp Geluiden 26: 2-5
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