Fun Striped Legless Lizard Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Striped Legless Lizard Facts For Kids

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The striped legless lizard is a native to the home of reptiles, Australia. It is found in the grasslands of South Australia which are dominated by the perennial, tussock-forming grasses such as Kangaroo Grass Themeda australis. If you ever happen to visit the southwest sites of the country, be sure to know these tiny reptiles are not too far away and they are everywhere in these sites, from grasslands to woodlands. Without a second thought, these creatures definitely look like snakes, and it's not surprising to confuse them with snakes but it is important to know that they are lizards and not snakes. The reason they are classified as lizards and not snakes is hidden in their anatomy. They have tiny hidden hind legs which are technically known as 'vestigial' legs and the tongue is unforked, unlike snakes. Apparently, the striped legless lizards are the descendants of a certain lizard that dug the earth to find food and dwell, and being lizards, it is practically easier to swim through the soil than digging. Hence the lizard evolved to be limbless although not completely. The limbs have been reduced to tiny flaps ever since. Although they are shy they live in an environment not too distant from humans.

Find the article interesting? check out for more fun content like these sagebrush lizard facts and curly-tailed lizard facts for kids.

Fun Striped Legless Lizard Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Spiders, crickets

What do they eat?


Average litter size?


How much do they weigh?

1 oz (28.3 g)

How long are they?

11.8 in (30 cm)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Pale grey

Skin Type

Slimy scales

What were their main threats?

Habitat Loss, Forest Fire

What is their conservation status?


Where you'll find them?

Tussock Grasslands, Volcanic Plains


Melbourne (Victoria), Southeastern Australia, Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales









Striped Legless Lizard Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a striped legless lizard?

The striped legless lizard is a species of lizard. It is partially limbless.

What class of animal does a striped legless lizard belong to?

Lizards belong to the class of reptiles which are the ancestors of dinosaurs.

How many striped legless lizards are there in the world?

The exact number of striped legless lizards is undetermined. Nonetheless, the extent of occurrence for this species is not good.

Where does a striped legless lizard live?

The striped legless distribution is limited to the Australian continent. It is predominantly found in South Eastern Australia, the New South Wales region, and the Australian capital territory of Canberra and Melbourne.

What is a striped legless lizard’s habitat?

The striped legless lizard habitat consists of temperate grasslands found in the highlands of southeastern Australia. They can be spotted in a rough and dry environment and their habitat is full of rocks as rocks provide good shelter and probably facilitate housing for the species as well. The striped legless lizards are primarily concentrated in the volcanic grasslands of the NSW region where most of the reptile populations from Australia are located. This site is a habitat where grasslands are dominated by perennial, tussock-grasslands such as Kangaroo Grass.

Who does a striped legless lizard live with?

Since it is a species native to Australia it is safe to say that these lizards live in a surrounding full of many other reptiles and insects. Nonetheless, they are pretty solitary animals who reside in shallow burrows, unexposed to the open ground. They usually only come together to breed.

How long does a striped legless lizard live?

The striped legless lizard has a decent age and lives between 10 - 20 years.

How do they reproduce?

The striped legless lizards are oviparous and lay as few as two eggs. They lay their eggs in the summer and incubate their eggs for a good five months until the babies hatch.

What is their conservation status?

The striped legless lizard distribution is severely threatened. It is listed as a Vulnerable species under the IUCN red list of conservation. The native Australian population was declared a vulnerable species in the ACT in 1996, in Australia as well. The transformation for grazing and cropping in recent times which is a combination of the human and animal-led phenomenon is a great contributor towards the declining habitat for the striped legless lizard along with many spiders, crickets species. Constant wild-fire breakouts in their habitat, the western and southeastern regions have also threatened the populations. Therefore, conservation efforts are being made by the authorities of south-eastern Australia and western Australia like the - NSW (New South Wales) government, Natural Heritage Trust of Canberra community projects in Melbourne, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, and other initiatives like The striped legless lizard EPBC, National non-profit organizations and govt act, the striped legless lizard recovery plan and wildlife sanctuaries have been established to conserve land.

Striped Legless Lizard Fun Facts

What does a striped legless lizard look like?

The striped legless lizard is a miniature snake by appearance and has the size of a big worm. They have a tiny and slimy body. Like many snake populations, they are pale grey in color juvenile snake in Australia has stripes along its entire body length. They inhabit sites with rocks hence the pale grey probably serves as camouflage.

The volcanic plains of NSW, Australia, are home to the striped legless lizard.

How cute are they?

Striped legless lizards are not as cute as geckos but they are definitely alluring with their sheen.

How do they communicate?

Like other lizards, these species use tactile communications to understand their surroundings.

How big is a striped legless lizard?

The striped legless lizard is almost as big as a common lizard. In fact, an average common lizard grows up to 7.9 in (20 cm) whereas the striped legless lizard can grow up to 11.8 in (30 cm) hence it is still bigger than the average lizard. However, it can still fit in your palm.

How fast can a striped legless lizard move?

Like other legless lizard populations, striped legless lizards can crawl at a speed of approximately 6 mph (9.7 kph). Their body type gives them an edge over landforms like rocks and it is probably even more convenient to move on the ground.

How much does a striped legless lizard weigh?

The native Australian reptile weighs around 1 oz (28.3 g) which is almost 27 times smaller than the common water snake 20 oz (567 g). Hence is a striped legless lizard is more close to lizards in terms of along with anatomy.

What are the male and female names of the species?

The male and female of the species go by the common name of striped legless lizard.

What would you call a baby striped legless lizard?

A baby striped legless lizard is known as a 'Neonate' which is a common name for juvenile reptiles.

What do they eat?

The striped legless lizard diet mainly consists of insects like spiders and crickets that are readily available in underground locations like burrows and sand tunnels. Since the lizard is an underground resident, it only comes out in the day to forage for its food.

Are they poisonous?

While most of the reptiles and wild animals from western Australia are poisonous, the striped legless lizard is an on-poisonous reptile that is actually pretty shy and harmless.

Would they make a good pet?

You might be scared at first to touch these lizards but surprisingly, these cute little reptiles are pretty friendly and non-venomous. They have no reason to be afraid of. They will not bite you either if you approach them with a friendly attitude.

Did you know...

When threatened they can confuse predators by detaching their tails, just like common lizards which continue to wriggle.

They are more closely related to the gecko population than snakes.

Striped legless lizards are casually referred as to "critters" which comes from the word creatures and roughly means 'a tiny creature.'

Some animals hold the capacity to alter the biotic and abiotic components in their environment. There is a negative relationship between the grazing cattle and grassland reptiles like the striped legless lizard as the cattle tends to overgraze on the patches. This has led to a loss of habitat for the striped legless lizard populations.

Are striped legless lizards dangerous?

Although it might look like it, they are actually harmless and absolutely venom-less. In fact, other legless lizard species like Burton's legless lizards are rated as excellent pets because of their intelligence and low maintenance. In comparison with the Burton's legless lizard, the striped legless lizard is still much shy and would rather not come in contact with humans at all.

Why are they called striped legless lizards?

Although they closely resemble snakes, the native aus retile is categorized as a lizard due to their anatomical differences from snakes. Since lizards have legs and the species doesn't, it came to be called a 'legless' lizard. Moreover snakes don't have ears, lizards do. Just like other lizards, the striped legless lizard has an ear hole on both sides of their face, unlike snakes who do not have any openings in their head area.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these eastern blue-tongued lizard facts and Texas horned lizard facts for kids.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable striped legless lizard coloring pages.

Main image by John Wombey, CSIRO

Second image by Benjamint444

<p>A dedicated content writer and language enthusiast, Ritika holds a Bachelor's degree in English Language and Literature from Fergusson College. With a keen interest in linguistics and literary adaptations, she has conducted extensive research in these domains. Beyond her academic pursuits, Ritika actively volunteers at her university, providing academic and on-campus assistance to fellow students.</p>

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