Common Sun Skink

Latin: Eutropis multifasciata (Mabuya multifasciata)
Family: Scincidae
Order: Squamata
English: Common Sun Skink, Many-lined Sun Skink, Many-striped Skink
Indonesian: Kadal Kebun

Many-lined Sun Skink
Common Sun Skink showing yellow side
Many-lined Sun Skink
Common Sun Skink sunbathing
Many-lined Sun Skink
Common Sun Skink showing its long tail
Many-lined Sun Skink
Common Sun Skink - funny toes

Several times I have been waiting for the skinks living in our back yard to move to the right position for being photographed. They live near (or in?) a pile of dead branches and leaves in the corner of the garden.

Initially I took this animal for a Garden Supple Skink: Lygosoma bowringii (Riopa bowringii), but N S Wong kindly informed me that the correct name is Mabuya multifasciata (Eutropis multifasciata). The animal in the picture seems to be a female:

Dorsal scales are keeled, usually distinctly tricarinate (three-ridged). The main distinct difference from the males is that the females have many white spots (ocelli) that are edged distinctly by black colouration.

Not including the tail it is about 12 cm long. Its total length, including the tail, will be around 30 cm. This skink has a greenish-brown skin. Depending on the light direction it shows indistinct lines on the back (running from head to tail) and small spots at the side of the body.

The animal is very shy, and that is the reason it can survive in our garden. Our female cat is an every-day hunter that has a special interest in this kind of reptiles. Too often I find a dropped (or bitten off?) skink or gecko tail already crowded by ants. But that is part of the laws of the jungle (and garden) I guess.

Spiny-tailed House Gecko

Latin:Hemidactylus frenatus
Family: Gekkonidae
Order: Squamata
English: Spiny-tailed House Gecko, Common House Gecko
Indonesian: Cecak kayu

Size (snout to vent) : 6.5 cm ; (total length) : 13.5 cm

Spiny-tailed House Gecko

Spiny-tailed House Gecko

Most geckos I find after dark sitting around the outdoor lamps above the terrace. The lamps attract insects, and these are an important part of the geckos' diet. It is interesting to see them waiting and then suddenly attacking with unexpected fast moves.
In the daytime geckos still are active, but will hide in the shade of leaves, the eaves of the roof or other shelter.

The name of the 'Spiny-tailed House Gecko' is related to the fact that this gecko has characteristic rows of spiky tubercles along its tail. The colour of this species can vary from very light to dark brown.
Its other name, 'Common House Gecko', tells us that this gecko is common in many areas.

Beside in many parts of Asia its distribution ranges from East and South Africa to Mexico. In many tropical and sub-tropical areas the Common House Gecko is not indigenous, but was introduced.

Flat-tailed Gecko

Latin: Cosymbotus platyurus
Family: Gekkonidae
Order: Squamata
Indonesian: Cecak tembok

Size (snout to vent): 6.5 cm ; Size (total length): 13 cm

Flat-tailed Gecko Flat-tailed Gecko

This gecko is common in many areas. First I thought it to be a Four-clawed Gecko. After making some better photos I could see some important details. Based on its tail which is serrated along the edge I think it is safe to say this is a Flat-tailed Gecko. An other characteristic are the half-webbed fingers. Though this gecko is said to be nocturnal, I see it often active in the daytime on the walls under overhanging roofs.


The pages in the categories "animals" and "plants" give an impression of life in the front- and backyard of my house in Makassar, South Sulawesi, Indonesia. The photos were made in a period of several years.