PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The smallest state has some big news, if you’re a biologist: its first lizard.
A five-lined skink discovered on Earth Day in Rhode Island is not native to the state, meaning there might be a population here, excited scientists said.
“This is a huge deal. It’s very rare that a state would pick up an entirely new vertebrate species, let alone an entirely new vertebrate group — lizards,” said David Gregg, the executive director of the Rhode Island Natural History Survey.
A scientist found the juvenile lizard, small enough to fit in the palm of a hand, in South County and contacted Nancy Karraker, a herpetologist at the University of Rhode Island, who confirmed it was a five-lined skink, WJAR-TV reported.