Scincomorpha - skinks, wall lizards, and relatives


Lepidosauria; Squamata; Scincomorpha

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Show Blotched Blue-tongued Skink (Tiliqua nigrolutea) Image
Blotched Blue-tongued Skink (Tiliqua nigrolutea)
Show Common wall lizard (Podarcis muralis) Image
Common wall lizard (Podarcis muralis)

Diversity and Lower Taxonomy:

Traditionally, the Scincomorpha consisted of the following six families:

  • Scincidae (skinks) - the most speciose lizard family, with approximately 1200 species.
  • Cordylidae (spiny-tailed lizards)
  • Xantusiidae (night lizards) - 29 species of diurnal, viviparous lizards across three genera: Cricosaura (monospecific; subfamily Cricosaurinae), Lepidophyma (18 species; subfamily Xantusiinae), and Xantusia (10 species; subfamily Xantusiinae).
  • Lacertidae (wall lizards) - 32 genera.
  • Gymnophthalmidae (spectacled lizards)
  • Teiidae (whiptails)

While the Lacertidae, Gymnophthalmidae, and Teiidae have remained closely affiliated in the monophyletic clade Lacertiformes (as shown on the Squamata page), the remaining three groups are often placed away from the Lacertiformes.

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