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Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Scincidae
Genus: Leiolopisma
Duméril & Bibron, 1839

see text



Leiolopisma is a genus of skinks. Most species occur in the region of New Caledonia-New Zealand, and they are related to other genera from that general area, such as Emoia; these and others form the Eugongylus group. One living and two extinct taxa represent a clade endemic to the Mascarenes.(Austin & Arnold 2006)


An undescribed extinct taxon from Réunion was close to L. mauritiana (Austin & Arnold 2006). These two were formerly separated in Didosaurus. David Day (1979), in Vanished Species, described the Reunion skink as small and fast moving but completely unafraid of humans. Individuals would climb on observer's legs. Efforts to maintain the species in captivity proved futile. The Reunion skink was reported to be completely insectivorous.


  • Austin, J.J. & Arnold, E.N. (2006): Using ancient and recent DNA to explore relationships of extinct and endangered Leiolopisma skinks (Reptilia: Scincidae) in the Mascarene Islands. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 39(2): 503–511. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2005.12.011 (HTML abstract)
  • Day, David; 1979. Vanished Species. Gallery Books, London, Great Britain: pp. 254–255.