Are There Any Black Lizards? 10 Uncommon Black lizards Worldwide

Lizard body coloration can vary significantly between species and can range from shades of brown, gray, green, and black to vibrant colors such as red, orange, blue, and yellow. 

Coloration in lizards can serve different purposes, like camouflage, thermoregulation, or as a warning signal to other individuals. Body coloration also depends on several factors like location, temperature, and other environmental factors, and some species can even change their coloration rapidly in response to different stimuli. In today’s list, we are going to talk about 10 Black Lizards in the world.

Are There Any Black Lizards?

Yes, there are plenty of black lizards in the world. Their bodies may be completely black, like that of the Black Girdled Lizard, or may occur in combination with other colors, like the Fence Skink.

Body textures may also differ considerably, depending on the species and several other environmental factors.

10 Uncommon Black lizards Worldwide

1) Black-girdled lizard 

Black Girdled Lizard

Scientific name Cordylus niger
Common name swart-skurwejantjie, sonkykers (Afrikaans)
Size ~7 centimeters
Weight 10-30 grams
Location endemic to Sub-Saharan Africa

Black Girdled Lizards derive their species’ name from the word ‘niger,’ which popularly refers to black. The lizard is pitch black, giving it a melanistic look.

With shield-like pointy dorsal scales that girdle around its body in an imbricate manner, the Black Girdled Lizard appears to be well-armed.

Despite being a rocky lizard, preferring rocky crevices for shelter, one can occasionally spot them in gardens with ample amounts of shelter.

2) Fence Skink

Fence Skink

Scientific name Cryptoblepharus virgatus
Common name Wall Skink, Snake-eyed Skink
Size ~10 centimeters
Weight ~15 grams
Location Queensland, Papua New Guinea

Fence Skinks are small, slender lizards with white stripes going down to the tail from a black, brown, or gray body. A nocturnal species, Cryptoblepharus virgatus, consumes spiders and tiny insects.

It is well-known for having unusually placed eyes that are hidden by a transparent scale, giving the impression that it has no eyes, like that of a snake.

3) Argentine Black and White Tegu

Argentine Black and White Tegu

Scientific name Salvator merianae
Common name Black and White Tegu
Size up to 4 feet in length
Weight up to 7 kilograms
Location native to South America

The fourth lizard in this list of Black and White Lizards is the Argentine White Tegu, a popular pet among reptile lovers. These lizards derive their name from their mixed pattern of black and white dots and stripes over their bodies.

Despite being one of the largest species of tegus, the Argentine Black Tegu is quite docile and is an extremely intelligent animal that one can even house train it. Being an omnivore, they will devour almost anything from invertebrates and crustaceans to seeds and fruits.

4) Black and Yellow Striped Gecko

Black and Yellow Striped Gecko
Black and Yellow Striped Gecko | Credit: geckotime
Scientific name Oedura marmorata
Common name Marbled Velvet Gecko
Size ~18 centimeters
Weight 50-80 grams
Location Madagascar

It is a small, nocturnal gecko with wide, rounded eyes that are well adapted to seeing in the dark, a flat, triangular-shaped head, and striking black and white stripes.

The species uses its sticky tongue to capture its prey, which includes insects and other tiny invertebrates. They are extremely adaptable lizards that can survive in a range of environments, including forests to deserts.

Due to habitat loss and degradation, the Black and White Striped Geckos are regarded as a vulnerable species. To maintain the survival of this species in the wild, conservation efforts for both the animal and its environment are crucial.

5) Fringe-Toed Velvet Gecko 

Fringe-Toed Velvet Gecko
Fringe-Toed Velvet Gecko | Credit:Worthy Geckos Australia (Facebook)
Scientific name Oedura filicipoda
Common name Velvet Gecko
Size ~2.5 inches
Weight 20-30 grams 
Location endemic to Australia; now worldwide due to the pet trade

The Fringe Toed Velvet Gecko comes in varying patterns and colorations, but the ones we are considering for this list are their hatchlings. Newly hatched individuals display a vivid banding pattern, thick black bands intercepted by thin white bands.

As they grow older, Fringe Toed Velvet Geckos will feed on insects and other small invertebrates, and being a nocturnal species, they will primarily forage at night.

6) Black Tree Monitor

Black Tree Monitor

Scientific name Varanus beccarii
Common name Beccari’s monitor
Size 90-120 centimeters
Weight 8-10 grams
Location Indonesia

Black Tree Monitors are known for their distinctive black skin and yellow or green eyes, and along with their exceptionally long tails, they have an astonishing prehistoric appearance.

They feed on a variety of prey, including birds, reptiles, and mammals, and have powerful jaw and sharp teeth to help them capture and hold onto their food. These lizards are highly intelligent and social, which makes them a popular choice among pet lovers.

7) Asian Water Monitor

Asian Water Monitor

Scientific name Varanus salvator
Common name Common Water Monitor, Rice Lizard, Ring Lizard
Size ~2.5 meters
Weight ~20 kilograms (males)
Location South and Southeast Asia

The next lizards on this list of Black Lizards are the second heaviest lizard, the Asian Water Monitor. With blackish to dark brown skin and yellowish near the belly region, the Asian Water Monitor has quite a distinctive appearance.

Their tails are compressed laterally, and they have bodies that are muscular and well-built. Their diet includes rodents, fish, birds, crabs, and preferably carrion.

8) Marine Iguana

Marine Iguana

Scientific name Amblyrhynchus cristatus
Common name Sea Iguana, Saltwater Iguana
Size up to 22 inches (excluding the tail)
Weight 1-12 kilograms
Location Galapagos Island

The Marine Iguana demands a special position in the lizard family for being the only lizard capable of foraging in the ocean, where it feeds on algae. The coloration of Marine Iguanas, though black, may vary considerably depending on the location or the subspecies.

The black color helps to absorb heat from the sun after a long trip from the ocean. They also have sharp teeth and strong jaws that allow them to scrape algae off rocks and cliffs. Marine iguanas are considered a unique and iconic species of the Galápagos and are protected by law.

9) Fiordland Skink

Fiordland Skink
Fiordland Skink | Credit: r/reptiles (Reddit)
Scientific name Oligosoma acrinasum
Common name Fiordland Skink
Size ~10 centimeters
Weight ~8.5 grams
Location Fiordland forests, South Islands, New Zealand

Fiordland Skink is a Black Lizards species that live in forests and is distinguished by its striking black coloration with a silvery sheen. Fiordland skinks are nocturnal animals that eat spiders and insects.

They are one of the rarest skink species in New Zealand, and the loss of habitat and the introduction of predators are severely threatening their populations. To safeguard this species and its environment, conservation measures are underway.

10) Southern Coal Skink

Scientific name Plestiodon anthracinus
Common name Coal Skink
Size  5-7 inches
Weight 0.2-0.3 grams
Location Southeastern USA

The last species of Black Lizard is the Southern Coal Skink, with a glossy black to dark brown body, giving it a coal-like appearance. Adult males develop dark orange coloration on the sides of their heads during the breeding season.

The Southern Coal Skink is a diurnal creature that eats insects and spiders. Although southern coal skink populations could be harmed by habitat loss and fragmentation, these animals are often not regarded as threatened or endangered.

Now we come to the end of our today’s article on 10 Black Lizards. We will be back soon, so until then, do check out our other articles on snakes, lizards, birds, fishes, and several other niches. I’m sure they won’t fail to fascinate you.

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