Terror skink

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Terror skink
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Sauria
Infraorder: Scincomorpha
Family: Scincidae
Subfamily: Eugongylinae
Genus: Phoboscincus
Species: P. bocourti
Binomial name
Phoboscincus bocourti
(Brocchi, 1876)
Phoboscincus bocourti distribution.png
Synonyms
  • Eumeces bocourti Brocchi, 1876
  • Phoboscincus bocourti
    Greer, 1974[2]

The terror skink (Phoboscincus bocourti) is a species of skink endemic to the Île des Pins (Isle of Pines) in New Caledonia.[2]

Etymology[edit]

The specific name, bocourti, is in honor of French zoologist Marie Firmin Bocourt.[3]

Rediscovery[edit]

This rare species was considered extinct until December 2003 when a specimen was found by some specialists from the French Muséum national d'histoire naturelle (the animal was photographed and filmed before being released). Before, it was only known from a single specimen, collected on the same island by a man named Balanza.

Diet[edit]

The teeth of P. bocourti are long, curved and sharp, suggesting predatory habits unusual for a large skink; most skinks are omnivorous. Its diet might include larger invertebrates, other lizards, young birds, and eggs.

Description[edit]

It is about 50 centimetres (20 in) long, making it the third largest reptilian predator on the island, the others being a prehistorically extinct land-going crocodile and goanna.

Behavior[edit]

It is probably nocturnal.

Threats[edit]

It may face predation and competition from cats, or the black, brown and Pacific rats that live on some parts of the island.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Sadlier RA, Whitaker AH, Bauer AM. (2009). "Phoboscincus bocourti". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.1. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 6 August 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Phoboscincus bocourti at ReptileDatabase.cz
  3. ^ Beolens B, Watkins M, Grayson M. (2011). The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. xiii + 296 pp. ISBN 978-1-4214-0135-5. (Phoboscincus bocourti, pp. 28-29).

Further reading[edit]

  • Brocchi [P]. 1876. "Sur un Scincoïdien nouveau appartenant au genre Eumèces". Bulletin de la Société philomathique de Paris, Series 6, 12: 95-97. (Eumeces bocourti, new species).
  • Greer AE. 1974. "The genetic relationships of the Scincid lizard genus Leiolopisma and its relatives". Australian Journal of Zoology Supplementary Series 22 (31): 1-67. (Phoboscincus, new genus).

External links[edit]