You are here » home advanced search search results Oligosoma suteri

Oligosoma suteri (BOULENGER, 1906)

IUCN Red List - Oligosoma suteri - Least Concern, LC

Can you confirm these amateur observations of Oligosoma suteri?

Add your own observation of
Oligosoma suteri »

Find more photos by Google images search: Google images

Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae (Eugongylini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Suter’s skink, Egg-laying Skink 
SynonymLygosoma suteri BOULENGER 1906
Lygosoma (Leiolopisma) suteri — SMITH 1937: 223
Leiolopisma suteri — MCCANN 1955
Leiolopisma suteri — GREER 1974: 17
Leiolopisma suteri — HENLE 1981
Robbisaurus suteri — WELLS & WELLINGTON 1985
Oligosoma suteri — TOWNS 1994
Oligosoma suteri — PATTERSON & DAUGHERTY 1995
Oligosoma suteri — HICKSON et al. 2000
Oligosoma suteri — HITCHMOUGH et al. 2016 
DistributionNew Zealand, Great Barrier Island, North Island (Three Kings to Alderman Is)

Type locality: Great Barrier Island.  
Reproductionoviparous (egg-laying). This is New Zealand’s only native oviparous skink (the other egg-laying skink on New Zealand, Lampropholis delicata, has been introduced). 
TypesHolotype: WRM 60/620 (Whanganui Regional Museum in Whanganui, New Zealand). Locality possibly incorrect, see Hardy, 1977. There are three specimens in BMNH (1946.8.17.59-60, formerly 1907.3.13.1-3, from Flat Island, presented H. Suter, that are recorded as types. The species was stated to be based on a single specimen, so presumably the BMNH specimens are subsequent, non-type specimens. 
CommentHistory: Boulenger received both a specimen of O. suteri and O. homalonotum on loan from Henry Suter, it was not until decades later that McCann and Hardy found out that O.homalonotum does not occur on Flat Island at all and the labels must have been mixed up somewhere along the line (J. Jansen, pers. comm., 30 Jan 2016).

Variation: variable, ranging from very pale specimens through to very black specimens (Baling et al. 2016).

Habitat: O. suteri is a strictly coastal species that lives on rocky beaches, often with abundant driftwood (Gill and Whitaker, 1996). It can tolerate saltwater, is a strong swim- mer that readily enters rock pools and the surf zone, and can hold its breath underwater for up to 20 min (Whitaker, 1968; Robb, 1980; Gill and Whitaker, 1996). 
Etymologynamed after the collector of the type, H. Suter. 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Böhme, W. & Henkel, F. W. 1985. Zur Kenntnis der Herpetofauna Neukaledoniens, speziell der Gattung Rhacodactylus. Herpetofauna 7 (34): 23-29 - get paper here
  • Boulenger, GEORGE A. 1906. Descriptions of two new lizards from New Zealand. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. 17: 369-371 - get paper here
  • Chapple, David G.; Susan N. Keall, Charles H. Daugherty and Kelly M. Hare. 2017. Nest-site selection and the factors influencing hatching success and offspring phenotype in a nocturnal skink. Amphibia-Reptilia 38 (3): 363-369 - get paper here
  • Cree, Alison and Kelly M. Hare 2016. Reproduction and Life History of New Zealand Lizards. in: Chapple, D.G. (ed). New Zealand Lizards. Springer, pp. 169-206 - get paper here
  • FRANK, HERMANN 2015. Further observations on a population of the Canterbury spotted skink Oligosoma ‘Central Canterbury’ in lowland South Canterbury, New Zealand. BioGecko (3): 7-13
  • Greer, A.E. 1974. The generic relationships of the scincid lizard genus Leiolopisma and its relatives. Australian Journal of Zoology 31: 1-67. - get paper here
  • Hardy, G. 1977. The New Zealand Scincidae: a taxonomic study. New Zealand Journal of Zoology 4: 221-325 - get paper here
  • Hare, Kelly M., Shirley Pledger and Charles H. Daugherty. 2008. Low incubation temperatures negatively influence locomotor performance and behavior of the nocturnal lizard Oligosoma suteri (Lacertidae: Scincidae). Copeia 2008 (1): 16-22 - get paper here
  • Hare, Kelly M.; Charles H. Daugherty and David G. Chapple 2008. Comparative phylogeography of three skink species (Oligosoma moco, O. smithi, O. suteri; Reptilia: Scincidae) in northeastern New Zealand. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 46 (1): 303-315 - get paper here
  • Henle, K. 1981. Die Herpetofauna Neuseelands, Teil 3: Einheimische Skinke. Herpetofauna 3 (14): 14-18 - get paper here
  • HICKSON, Robert E.; KERRYN E. SLACK AND PETER LOCKHART 2000. Phylogeny recapitulates geography, or why New Zealand has so many species of skinks. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 70: 415–433 - get paper here
  • Hitchmough, Rodney A.; Geoffrey B. Patterson, and David G. Chapple 2016. Putting a Name to Diversity: Taxonomy of the New Zealand Lizard Fauna. in: Chapple, D.G. (ed). New Zealand Lizards. Springer, pp. 87-108 - get paper here
  • Janssen, J., Towns, D.R., Duxbury, M. and Heitkönig, I.M., 2015. Surviving in a semi-marine habitat: Dietary salt exposure and salt secretion of a New Zealand intertidal skink. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A: Molecular & Integrative Physiology, 189: 21-29 - get paper here
  • JANSSEN, JORDI 2015. A first-recorded case of hypomelanism in a wild Suter’s skink (Oligosoma suteri) following eradication of invasive alien species. BioGecko (3): 43-45
  • Patterson, G.B.; Daugherty, C.H. 1995. Reinstatement of the genus Oligosoma (Reptilia: Lacertilia: Scincidae). J. Royal Soc. New Zealand 25 (3): 327-331 - get paper here
  • Smith, M.A. 1937. A review of the genus Lygosoma (Scincidae: Reptilia) and its allies. Records of the Indian Museum 39 (3): 213-234
  • Stenhouse, V, Carter, AL, Chapple, DG, Hare, KM, Hartley, S, Nelson, NJ. 2018. Modelled incubation conditions indicate wider potential distributions based on thermal requirements for an oviparous lizard. J Biogeogr. 45: 1872– 1883 - get paper here
  • Stenhouse, Vaughn I. 2017. Modelling the distribution of an oviparous skink, Oligosoma suteri. MSc Thesis, Victoria University of Wellington, 77 pp. - get paper here
  • STEPHENSON, BRENT 2012. Suter’s skink (Oligosoma suteri) scavenging from a dolphin carcass. BioGecko (1): 44 - get paper here
  • van Winkel, D., Baling, M. & Hitchmough, R. 2018. Reptiles and Amphibians of New Zealand: A field guide. Auckland University Press, Auckland, 376 pp.
External links  
Is it interesting? Share with others:

As link to this species use URL address:

without field 'search_param'. Field 'search_param' is used for browsing search result.

Please submit feedback about this entry to the curator