Assisted breeding of skinks or how to teach a lizard old tricks!

  • Published source details Molinia F.C., Bell T., Norbury G., Cree A. & Gleeson D.M. (2010) Assisted breeding of skinks or how to teach a lizard old tricks!. Herpetological Conservation and Biology, 5, 311-319.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Use artificial insemination

Action Link
Reptile Conservation
  1. Use artificial insemination

    A replicated study in 2008–2009 in outdoor enclosures in Dunedin, New Zealand (Molinia et al. 2010) reported that artificially inseminated female McCann’s skinks Oligosoma maccanni did not give birth, although approximately half were gravid nine months after insemination. None of 10 artificially inseminated female McCann’s skinks gave birth in the year after insemination took place. Two months after insemination, eight of 10 artificially inseminated females were confirmed as ovulating and the authors reported that nine months after insemination approximately five of 10 of the females appeared to be gravid. Ten female McCann’s skinks kept in captivity were inseminated in March 2008 using sperm pooled from six males collected over two days (each female received at least 1 x 106 motile sperm, see original paper for details). Females were checked for ovulation by palpating the abdominal cavity.

    (Summarised by: Katie Sainsbury)

Output references
What Works 2021 cover

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 21

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.

Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape ProgrammeRed List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Mauritian Wildlife Supporting Conservation Leaders
Sustainability Dashboard National Biodiversity Network Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Bat Conservation InternationalPeople trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust