Lampropholis delicata

Plague skink

Also known as:

Rainbow skink

Family: Scincidae

Origin: Australia

A plague skink crawling.
Plague skinks compete with native lizard species for habitat and food.
Photo credit: Dylan van Winkel

Regional Pest Management Plan (RPMP) status

  • Hauraki Gulf Controlled Area pest — Site-led
  • Whole region — Sustained control
  • Hauraki Gulf Controlled Area Notice pest

View more about the RPMP statuses

General description

Small brown lizard, iridescent rainbow sheen to scales visible under bright light. Dark brown stripe down sides of body, sometimes white stripe present as well. One large scale on top of head.

What you need to know

To help protect our environment:

  • You must not breed, distribute, release or sell any plague skink within the Auckland region.
  • In the future, all commercial transport operators moving goods or people to or among Hauraki Gulf islands will need to have a Pest Free Warrant.
  • Anyone intending to move a building to or among Hauraki Gulf islands must notify Auckland Council at least 10 working days prior to movement so that an inspection can be arranged.


Disturbed habitats, urban areas, scrub, gardens, open rocky habitats, farmland.

Impact on environment

Eats a wide variety of invertebrates, competes with native reptiles.



Before moving or transporting potted plants, check the soil for small white plague skink eggs. Check for stowaways when moving gear, vessels, goods or freight.

Find out more:

For more information about plague skinks and their management, visit our Pest Free Hauraki Gulf page or contact Auckland Council at

A long skinny plague skink.
Also known as rainbow skinks, plague skinks look similar to our native skinks but are smaller.
Photo credit: Dylan van Winkel