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Going from saltwater crocodiles to NZ garden skinks is a bit of a change. One is the largest living reptile on the planet. The other is small and harmless.

I’ve been wanting to get some good shots of skinks taken for a while. The problem really is just the lighting. With a standard hot-shoe flash (even fired off-camera) you really get a lot of harsh shadows forming that envelope the detail.

This time round, I was using my ringlight flash with the macro lens to diffuse and spread the light more evenly. Hot spots are still inevitable because of the very shiny nature of the scales.

One of the interesting things about NZ lizards, is that almost all of them are viviparous. That means, they give birth to live young. It’s thought this was an adaptation to the various ice-ages in NZ. Being on island, the lizards didn’t have the chance to migrate to warm areas, then recolonise the cold areas when temperatures swing back. So eggs are developed within the body of the skink. This does tend to mean a low fecundity rate however.

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