Ablepharus rueppellii

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Rüppell's snake-eyed skink
Ablepharus Rueppellii.JPG
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Scincidae
Genus: Ablepharus
Species: A. rueppellii
Binomial name
Ablepharus rueppellii
Gray, 1839
Ablepharus rueppellii distribution (gray).png

Ablepharus rueppellii, known commonly as Rüppell's snake-eyed skink, is a species of skink found in the Middle East. It was formerly considered a subspecies of Ablepharus kitaibelii, but has since been distinguished. What is currently recognized as this species is possibly two distinct species.


It is found throughout north and central Israel, western Jordan, and the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt.[2] Also, one unconfirmed sighting has been reported in southern Lebanon. It also possibly lives in Syria, though this is also unconfirmed. In the areas where it can be found, it is generally uncommon. It is found in the leaf litter of forested or shrubby areas, and in Egypt, it is usually found near oases. It is highly localized in densely vegetated areas.

In Israel, the species is common and can be found in cities. It is one of the few reptiles capable of living in areas afforested with Aleppo pine (these are very widespread in Israel).

Rüppell's snake-eyed skink (young), Judaean Mountains 2014

Possible threats[edit]

Few threats exist to the species as a whole, though deforestation and loss of traditionally farmed orchards may affect specific populations. The species is protected by legislation in Israel.


  1. ^ Werner, Y., et al. 2006. Ablepharus rueppellii. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. Downloaded on 26 March 2015.
  2. ^ Baha el Din, Sherif (2006). A Guide to Reptiles & Amphibians of Egypt. The American University in Cairo Press. ISBN 978-9774249792. 

Further reading[edit]