The ONLY Native LIZARD Found in Michigan! (2024)

What kinds of lizards can you find in Michigan?”

common lizards in Michigan

I was amazed by the number of lizards in the United States – well over 150 species! Some species live only in a small area, and some are widespread over hundreds of miles.

Today, you’ll learn about the ONLY lizard in Michigan.


#1. Common Five-Lined Skink

  • Plestiodon fasciatus

species of lizards in Michigan

Identifying Characteristics:

  • Adults are up to 8.75 inches long.
  • 5 stripes are most apparent in hatchlings and fade as the skinks grow.
  • Males have orange-red coloring on the jaw during the breeding season.
  • Hatchlings are black with light stripes. The black coloring often fades to gray, and the lighter stripes darken.

Look for Common Five-Lined Skinks in Michigan in wooded areas near rotting stumps, outcrops of rock, and sometimes piles of boards or sawdust. Its diet consists of spiders, beetles, crickets, and other insects.

Credit: Virginia Herpetological Society

Females attend to their eggs throughout the incubation period.

They spend almost all of their time defending and caring for the eggs until they hatch!

If you happen to come across a nest, you may notice the mother curled up on top of or around the eggs. She also rolls the eggs to maintain their humidity, moves them back to the nest if they become disturbed, and even eats eggs that aren’t viable!


Do you need additional help identifying lizards?

Try this field guide!


 

Also, if you enjoy this article, make sure to check out these other guides!

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4 Comments

  1. My front door didn’t close completely and one crawled inside and up to the top of my door frame. I was sitting like five feet away and saw out of the corner of my eye something fall from the top of the door frame and I heard it hit the floor-it sounded like a piece of meat you might flop on the counter. I thought maybe it was a piece of the weather stripping that came loose and fell but when I got up to look, I saw what appeared to be a small lizard on its back and struggling to right itself. Of course I screeched (I’m a girl, after all, so shut up…) but it quickly righted itself and scurried back outside under the crack in the door. I told multiple people about this experience and they all replied similarly, “I’ve never seen any lizards in Michigan,” so I guess I dreamed all this shit up…AND! No! I! Did! **NOT**!! After some research, I discovered this was a textbook skink. I live about a mile from Houghton Lake proper and nearby marshlands are abundant. So yeah. Skink you!!