Q:

What do blue-tailed lizards eat?

A:

The blue-tailed lizard eats small worms and insects, including earthworms, caterpillars, beetles, crickets, grasshoppers, spiders, slugs, other lizards and small mice. Female lizards also eat their own eggs if they do not hatch. The blue-tailed lizard spends much of its day in dead trees searching for insects to eat. This lizard is also known as the five-lined skink.

The blue-tailed lizard, scientifically known as Plestiodon fasciatus, is active during the day, preferring to bask in the sun on top of rocks or to hunt for food. Young blue-tailed lizards are dark brown or black with brightly colored stripes down their backs that fade into a bright blue tail. As they mature, the stripes and bright blue tail fade in males. However, the females retain the bright blue tail as a defensive distraction to predators. Male five-lined skinks also develop an orange-red patch on their jaws during breeding season.

The blue-tailed lizard is a common reptile found in wooded areas, where the environment is moist and there are plenty of rock piles, stumps, logs and leaf litter to hide and breed in. These lizards grow up to as long as 8 inches. Predators of the five-lined skink include snakes, opossums, raccoons, foxes and hawks.


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