ANIMAL: Prehensile-Tailed Skink/Solomon Islands Skink/Monkey-Tailed Skink Corucia zebrata Type of Animal: Skink Habitat: Forests, semi-cleared areas, trees in cultivated food gardens Location(s): Solomon Islands Appearance: World’s largest skink, long body, strong short legs, triangular-shaped head w/ small round eyes, noticeable prehensile tail, males have broader heads & more slender body shape, fairly flat triangular head on both sexes, common/nominate subspecies larger/longer than Northern subspecies, dark green to olive-brown coloration often speckled w/ light brown/black, females slightly heavier but males longer Food/Diet: Leaves, leafy plants, greens, fruit, vegetables, legumes, melons, berries, flowers, shoots Status in Wild: Threatened Conservation: Breeding in zoos, aquariums, wildlife centers, & herpetoculture. Exportation from Solomon Islands illegal. Lifestyle: Found in group called circulus comprising male, 1-3 females, & young/juveniles. Solitary individuals (especially males) also occur). Additional Info: Called: Male Female Young Group: Circulus Weight: Male: 1-1.8 lbs Female: 1-2 lbs Young: 0.66 lbs Gestation: 7-10 months Life Span: 15-25 years Body Length: Male: 2-2.3 ft Female: 1.83-2 ft Young: 1.4 ft Tail Length: Male: 1-1.15 ft Female: 0.915-1 ft Young: 0.7 ft Main predators are raptors, boas, & rats. Threatened due to pet trade, habitat loss, deforestation, hunting for meat, & low reproductive rate. They’re ovoviviparous w/ 1-2 eggs hatching inside mom’s body, coming out as 1-2 live young. Young stay in circulus until 6-12 months old w/ males leaving before females. Whole circulus highly protective of young, often attacking intruders. Circulus members highly territorial of area/towards unfamiliar skinks, w/ territorial battles sometimes resulting in death. Males can be especially territorial & almost never accept other males. Females may sometimes accept new females. These skinks are highly arboreal. Also called Solomon Islands Tree Skink, Corucia Skink, Zebra Skink, Solomon Island Giant Skink, & Solomon Island Green Tree Skink. Sexually mature at 2 years old. Prehensile tail comes in handy for grabbing branches/maintaining balance. Sharp hooked claws act as climbing picks. Fun Fact(s): Only skink species w/ prehensile tail. Only entirely herbivorous skink. Unlike many lizards & many skinks, they can’t regenerate tail if it falls off, meaning preferred mode of defense is hissing/biting/scratching. These skinks can be fairly tame in captivity but caution must be taken around them (especially if there’s young around) due to powerful jaws & sharp claws. They’re not beginner pets.