Nearly 150 species of skinks are known from Australia, more species than in any other family of reptiles. They are diverse in appearance and habits, with smooth shiny scales and slender bodies. Although most skinks have four well-developed legs, each with five toes, loss of toes or limbs is found in several groups.
- One feature common to nearly all skinks is their ability to break off and subsequently replace all or part of their tail.
- In the roof of the mouth are the Jacobson’s organs, which the tongue carries odorous particles picked up from the air or from the surface of objects to, for identification.