What is a skink?
A skink is a type of lizard. The skinks we see in our yard here in Kansas are usually pretty small. They lose their tail as a defense mechanism and also bite in defense. They are not poisonous though and have very teeny teeth, so when they bite it is scarier than it is painful or harmful.
Skinks are lizards with round bellies, short stubby legs and very long tails. There are different sizes of skinks. Most around my neck of the woods are the size of Lizzie’s in the picture above. I think we have Great Plains skinks or Northern Prairie Skinks. Some skinks have bright blue tails, others have bright blue tongues!
Here are all the different types of skinks that live in Kansas: (source)
Family Scincidae – Skinks
Coal Skink – Eumeces anthracinus
Five-lined Skink – Eumeces fasciatus
Broadhead Skink – Eumeces laticeps
Great Plains Skink – Eumeces obsoletus
Southern Prairie Skink – Eumeces obtusirostris
Northern Prairie Skink – Eumeces septentrionalis
Ground Skink – Scincella lateralis
Now you know!