Full name: Chalcides ocellatus (Forskal, 1775)

This family includes 1.560 species and is the largest family of lizards. Representatives of this family can be found around the planet with the exception of the continent of Antartica while they exhibit impressive diversity both in size (from 2-35cm) and in their morphology and behavior. The main characteristic of the representatives of this family are the reduce limbs, the absence of pronounce neck, the smooth skin surface and the densely arranged overlapping scales. Due to the reduced small size limbs, the movement of these lizards resembles more the movement of snakes than of other typical lizards. The limbs are totally absent from some representatives of the family. In Cyprus, this family is represented by four species; these are the Snake-eyed Skink, the Ocellated Skink, the Bridled Skink and the Schneider’s Skink.

Medium size lizard with a body that can reach 20cm in length and tail that does not exceed 15cm. Smooth back with yellow-brown coloration were fine white spots are clearly distinguished surrounded by black discs. The ventral surface has a pale white color without visible spots.


Mainly located in areas with soft sandy substrate such as bushes and cultivated areas in lowland areas. It is consider as a semi-cryptic species as is usually hidden in burrows underground. It occurs from the coast to an altitude of 600m.


It feeds mainly with terrestrial arthropods such as insects and snails.


Reproduce during spring and summer. Females usually lay from 3-11 eggs that are hatched after a period of 2-3 months.


Global distribution: Central and north Africa, Middle East to Pakistan, the Arabian Peninsula, southeastern Turkey, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Malta.

Status: Common


Special protection:
• Protected by European Directive 92/43/EC (Annex IV)
• Protected by the Cyprus Law 153 (I) 2003 (Annex III)
• Protected by the Bern Convention (Annex II)

About Us



Herpetological Society of Cyprus (HSC) was established in 1990 with the aim of promoting, studying and conserving Cyprus’ herpetofauna. As part of its work, HSC fulfill presentations, educational seminars, studies and researches, along with other activities that relates with informing and educating the public about reptiles Cyprus.

Contact Details
           Address:   Herpetological Society,
                            P.O box 61435,
                            Paphos, Cyprus
           Tel:          +357 26 967600
           Fax:         +357 26 967007
           Email: HerpetSocietyCy@gmail.com


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