Red-Eyed Skink in habitat

Hi guys, your pal Patrick James here, and today we’re taking a break from your regularly scheduled car content. I know, but Lindsay thinks it’ll help me make friends if I talk more about who I am and my life and not just cars. So I thought I’d talk about Darth!


Tribolonotus gracilis

Darth, as you know, is a Red-Eyed Crocodile Skink. Their scientific name, if that’s something you want to know, is Tribolonotus gracilis. Some people call them Black Dragons, and they do look like baby dragons to me! They’re not as common to see as pets as other lizards, but I’ve always enjoyed not following the crowd. Skinks, like Lindsay, are nocturnal, so Darth hides out during the day and comes out to play at night.


A Happy Home

Darth is my baby, and I believe in giving my baby the best. Lindsay says that he lives better than we do! He has his own tank in the living room that takes up half the wall. Skinks come from the rain forest, so the tank has all sorts of plants, warming lights, and its own humidifier – I guess Florida isn’t humid enough for him.  If you’re interested, the experts say you need a tank with a secure lid, plenty of hiding spots, and a substrate that retains moisture. Additionally, maintaining a temperature range of 75-85°F and a humidity level of 70-80% will help keep your skink healthy and happy.


Lots of these skinks don’t like being handled, but not Darth. He is fine with taking rides around the house – but what he really likes is hanging out in the shower with me. Must remind him of rainstorms.



The one drawback about Darth is his diet. Lindsay HATES going into the fridge for a bottle of water and seeing the takeout containers of his meal of the week – crickets, mealworms, sometimes even roaches! She is always complaining about how hard she works to keep the place clean and the bugs out, just for me to bring them back in. (I try to hide them in the back, really! But sometimes if we haven’t gotten to the grocery store lately they are hard to miss.) . It’s important to provide a varied diet and ensure that the insects supplemented with calcium and vitamin D3.


Hope you all liked meeting my little dude! I hope this blog has inspired you to learn more about the Red Eye Crocodile Skink and consider adding one to your collection.


Do you want to know more about Red-Eyed Crocodile Skinks, or should I just get back to nerding out over cars? Let me know in the comments!


Happy herping!


Patrick James

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