If you have some concerns, or just curious, you may be wondering if Blue tongued skinks have teeth and if they pose a real threat. Well, I am going to give you the facts you need right now.
Do blue tongue skinks have teeth? Yes, blue tongue skinks do have teeth. However, their teeth are nothing really to be worried about. They are quite small and non-threatening. They do not offer any real threat. Also, they are not poisonous so that is not a concern either.
Now that you know that they do have teeth, and they are not much of a threat. By the way, in the unlikely event that they do bite you, the chances of them drawing blood is very minimal.
Let me go on now to explain if they are generally aggressive if they make good pets. Also, I will reveal one particular species that you may want to avoid. Keep reading…
What is the blue tongue skink?
The blue tongue skink has a number of different names. It is known as:
- Eastern blue-tongued skink.
- Blue Tongued lizard
- or even nicknamed “Bluey”
It is a member of the Scincidae family and part of the Tiliqua genus. In fact, the Blue-tongued skink is one of the largest members of the skink family.
They are most commonly known for their very vividly bright blue tongue. They are natives to the desert and rainforests of Australia and New guinea.
Do blue tongue skinks bite?
Earlier we discussed if blue tongue skinks have teeth. We established that they do. But, you may be wondering what happens if they do bite you? Is it anything to be worried about? And, what is the likelihood of this ever happening? Let me attempt to tackle these questions.
The reality is they are very unlikely to bite you. The blue tongue skink uses biting as a very much last resort. Are you with me?
The Tongue Flicker!
It prefers to call the bluff of his preditors by flicking its elegant blue tongue. This tongue usually scares off most predators and allows them to get away unscathed (most of the time).
In the unlikely event that the predator is not scared by their blue-tongue. Then, if they are backed into a corner, and that is the only option, only then will they consider biting.
And with that being said, the bite really is not that effective. So, the chances are it won’t be enough to get rid of a persistent predator.
Are the blue tongue skinks aggressive?
As we have been talking about the blue tongue skinks ability to bite or if they have teeth. You may be wondering if they’re general temperament is aggressive or not. For that reason in this section I’m going to discuss their temperament and if they pose much of a risk.
Generally speaking, the blue tongue skink is not really aggressive. They are quite docile and good pets.
However, I have to warn you that there is a particular type of blue-tongue skin known as the Tanimbar Island Blue-tongued skink (Tiliqua scincoides chimaera) which is aggressive.
This blue tongue skink sub-species is not advisable for families, and therefore you should not consider this as a potential pet.
Why do blue tongue lizards hiss?
If you have ever been around blue tongue lizards you will notice that hissing is one of their best choices when it comes to self-defence. You may be wondering why they do this?
For that reason, in the section, I’m going to explain some of the reasons for this and explain the psychology of this behaviour.
Limited Defensive Tricks
Look at it from their perspective, he has really short legs and not really much to defend himself with. With his short legs and lack of climbing ability means if he is chased, he is going to struggle. So, in summary, he doesn’t really have many options to play with.
Therefore he is likely to hiss to try and frighten off any potential predators. Think of it as their bluff, hoping that the predator will get scared.
So if you ever notice that your sink is hissing at you this is a clear indication that he sees you as a threat and you need to give him some space.
Are they easy to take care of?
So far we have learned that they are generally well behaved and not much of a real threat. But are they easy to look after, as a pet? Well, let me explain.
Generally speaking, yes these skins are easy to take care of. I say “generally speaking” because, if you remember, I mentioned earlier there is a specific sub-species of called the Tanimbar. And, if you remember, he is quite aggressive and definitely not an easy pet to take care of.
And following on from what I said earlier, this is a particular species that you want to stay clear off as a domesticated pet.
How do they communicate?
You may be wondering how do these lizards communicate with other lizards or animals, right? In general, their mode of communication is body language, like most lizards to be fair.
Simple things like flashing their tongue, how they look at other lizards, running away, etc. These are all subtle parts of body language that they use to communicate. Are you with me? In a way, this similar to human nature as well.
Are they affectionate?
In general yes they are affectionate and good pets to have. However, they do not mix well with other lizards.
Issues with deciding their Sex
Another complication with these lizards is it’s difficult to tell which sex they are. You may be wondering why this is an issue or why it’s relevant.
The problem with this is, if you mix two males together it is a big recipe for disaster. Why? Because they are likely to fight like cats and dogs, are you with me?
Also, with this confusion about their sex you could also run into problems with unexpected breeding. This can happen if you accidentally have a male and a female grouped together.
For these reasons, it is always recommended to house them alone to save yourself the headache.
Do they keep snakes away?
You may be wondering if blue tongue skinks could be helpful and scare snakes away. This may be because you have a snake problem or just general curiosity. For this reason, I’m going to address this question.
Firstly it is possible for a blue tongue lizard to eat or attack a snake. However, it is also known for snakes to attack and even kill them as well. This all comes down to size. Effectively, whoever is the biggest and strongest wins.
In this section, I am going to answer some questions related to Blue-tongued skinks (Click here to see if Blue Tongue Skink can Live in a 40 Gallon Tank. If you have some questions that you feel have not been answered, feel free to drop a comment below.
Can blue tongue skinks eat dog food? Yes, they can be dog food, according to this site. Also, many keepers feed them dog food. In addition to this, they swear by mixing dog food with vegetables to make a nutritious meal.
However, if you consider doing this, make sure that you choose can dog food instead of dried kibble. Also, make sure that you look for dog food which does not have artificial colors, sweeteners or anything that will cause issues with your lizard.
I’m not saying that this is the ideal diet by the way. But, based on the fact that other people have done this successfully, it is possible.
Do blue tongues lay eggs? No. This is quite an interesting question because most people would assume that they do. Why? Because most lizards do. And, it is usually a safe assumption to make.
However, this lizard is an exception. After mating successfully, the female skink will give live birth to two or three babies.
How often do blue tongues shed? The adults will typically shed every month or two. But, this depends on the weather and other environmental factors, such as, have you hydrated him correctly? As for the babies, they are likely to shed more frequently than this. So, be prepared for that.