Perentie

Varanus giganteus TL 2.5m

What does it look like?  Australia’s largest lizard. Pale brown to brown above, with large, yellow, dark-edged spots on body and tail forming transverse rows, and heavy dark brown or blackish speckling. Head and throat paler, with thin dark lines forming reticulated pattern, and head with distinctive angular brow. Neck long with large, sagging throat, and long tail with yellow tip. Limbs powerful, blackish and with large yellowish-cream spots. Underparts whitish or cream.

Where is it found?  Central and western Australia, from central-western WA coast in broad inland band through southern NT and northern SA, to western Qld.

What are its habitats & habits? Found in arid sandy deserts, gorges and rocky ranges, where it shelters in deep burrows in rocky outcrops and beneath boulders. Terrestrial, foraging over large areas for lizards, snakes, mammals, birds and invertebrates, but will also eat carrion. Food detected using large, forked tongue. Oviparous, laying around 9 parchment-shelled eggs in a clutch.