List of reptiles of Australia

The perentie (Varanus giganteus) is Australia's largest lizard.

The non-avian reptiles of Australia are a diverse group of animals, widely distributed across the continent. Three of the four reptile orders are represented: Testudines, Squamata and Crocodilia. The only missing extant order is Sphenodontia, containing the tuataras, which are endemic to New Zealand. Australia has over 860 species, a large number in comparison to other continents; for example, North America's total is about 280.[1] The most speciose group is Squamata, the snakes and lizards. They are especially diverse in the arid areas of Australia, where other fauna are scarcer. Spinifex grass is a major habitat which allows them to remain in a relatively cool, moist area.

Australia has a large array of reptiles which can be dangerous to humans. The world's largest reptile, the saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), is native to the continents's north coastal area.

Australian reptile familiesEdit

Testudines – 4 families
Family Common names Example species Example photo
Cheloniidae Sea turtles Green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas)  
Dermochelyidae Leatherback sea turtle Leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea)  
Chelidae Austro-American side-necked turtles Common snakeneck turtle (Chelodina longicollis)  
Carettochelyidae Pig-nosed turtle Pig-nosed turtle (Carettochelys insculpta)  
Squamata – 12 families
Family Common Names Example Species Example Photo
Gekkonidae Geckos Thick-tailed gecko (Underwoodisaurus milii)  
Pygopodidae Legless lizards Burton's legless-lizard (Lialis burtonis)  
Agamidae dragon lizards Eastern bearded dragon (Pogona barbata)  
Varanidae Monitors or goannas Lace monitor (Varanus varius)  
Scincidae Skinks Western blue-tongued skink (Tiliqua occipitalis)  
Typhlopidae Blind snakes Woodland Blind Snake (Ramphotyphlops proximus) -
Pythonidae Pythons Green tree python (Morelia viridis)  
Colubridae Colubrid snakes Brown tree snake (Boiga irregularis)  
Elapidae - Common death adder (Acanthophis antarcticus)  
Hydrophiidae Sea snakes - -
Laticaudidae Sea kraits - -
Acrochordidae File snakes Arafura file snake (Acrochordus arafurae)  
Crocodilia – 1 family
Family Common Names Example Species Example Photo
Crocodylidae Crocodiles Freshwater crocodile (Crocodylus johnstoni)  

See alsoEdit

  • List of reptiles of Tasmania
  • List of reptiles of Western Australia
  • List of Australian and Antarctic dinosaurs
  • Harold G. Cogger. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Sydney, AH & AW Reed. Revised edition, 1983. ISBN 0-589-50356-1 [1979 and subsequent editions]
  • Harold G. Cogger. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne. Revised edition 2014. ISBN 9780643100350


  1. ^ Wilson, Steve; Swan, Gerry (2005). A Complete Guide to Reptiles of Australia. Reed New Holland.