A close relative of the more familiar bluetongue, the shingleback is an extremely distinctive member of the lizard family known as skinks. Its two most striking features are the short rounded tail, which bears a remarkable resemblance to the head end to confuse predators and the huge scales covering the body giving it a rough and bumpy appearance. The general colour varies somewhat from an all over dark brown to patterns of light brown, cream and even yellow. Like its close relative, the tongue is large, fleshy and dark blue in colour and used to warn off any potential threats such as dingoes or foxes. Adult shinglebacks are robust lizards with a broad, triangular head. A large adult will measure over 35cm in length.