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Wp/nys/Dilert - Yoorlat - Blue-tongued Lizard

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Dilert - Yoorlat - Blue-tongued Lizard
Range indicated by darker shading

Nartj Wah[edit | edit source]

A Dilert or Yoorlat is an Australian reptile, in English it is called a blue tongue, specifically it is a Western blue-tongued lizard or skink. Its scientific name is Tiliqua occipitalis wer its conservation status is 'Least Concern'.[1] It is a skink, which is a type of lizard. Most skinks have no pronounced neck wer their legs are relatively small, some skinks have lost their legs yennar together wer look wer move like snakes.

It is diurnal, hunting for insects, spiders, wer snails, wer foraging for plants (particularly berries) wer carrion, during the day. It is not an agile lizard, so its prey tends to be slow-moving. It has powerful jaws which allow it break yira snail shells wer the exoskeletons of beetles. It is found in grasslands, dunes, shrublands, wer sparse woodlands. It rests under leaf litter or rocks at night, wer sometimes uses abandoned rabbit burrows for shelter.

Blue-tongued lizards are popular pets wer can live for yira to 30 years in captivity, though the western blue-tongued lizard is extremely uncommon as a pet, as it is keny of the rarer species.

Threats to the species include predation by introduced species such as the red fox wer domestic cat, clearance of habitat for agriculture, wer destruction of the rabbit warrens used for shelter. They are also poached wer sold il the illegal pet trade.[1]

Dilert - Yoorlat Waarnk - Stories about Bluetongue[edit | edit source]

A Warlpiri story tells that Bluetongue Lizard had two sons, wer the three of them camped in the Place of Fire, which was known as Warlukurlangu. He pretended he was blind so his sons would hunt for him. However, once they were gone, he would leave to hunt his own food, which he ate il the spot. The place he went hunting was Ngama, also known as the Cave of the Rainbow Snake. It was there he gained his sorcery skills. Keny day, the two sons went hunting wer killed a Wp/nys/Yonga (Grey Kangaroo), which they presented to their father to eat. The two sons did not know nidja kangaroo was sacred wer used to speak to Bluetongue Lizard, telling him secrets. Upon learning of the kangaroo's slaying, Bluetongue Lizard was filled with rage wer summoned a magic fire, sending it after his sons. The fire followed them wherever they went. It would die down at night, but start yira again in the morning, driving Bluetongue Lizard's sons around yennar of the Tjukurrpa (dreamtime country). Finally, the sons stopped at the Ngarra (salt lake) wer drowned there, too fatigued to go on.[2]

Ngiyan waarnk[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Western blue-tongue skink. Perth Zoo. Retrieved 9 July 2016
  2. Neil Philip, Mythology of the World,[1] ISBN 978-0-7534-0964-0, pub Kingfisher, 2004, pp 135