Skinks are lizards belonging to the family Scincidae, a family in the infraorder Scincomorpha. With more than 1,500 described species across 100 different taxonomic genera, the family Scincidae is one of the most diverse families of lizards. Skinks are characterized by their smaller legs in comparison two typical lizards and are found in different habitats except arctic and subarctic regions.
Skinks are very specific in their habitat as some can depend on vegetation while others may depend on land and the soil. As a family, skinks are cosmopolitan; species occur in a variety of habitats worldwide, apart from boreal and polar regions. Various species occur in ecosystems ranging from deserts and mountains to grasslands.
Many species are good burrowers. More species are terrestrial or fossorial (burrowing) than arboreal (tree-climbing) or aquatic species. Some are "sand swimmers", especially the desert species, such as the mole skink or sand skink in Florida. Some use a very similar action in moving through grass tussocks. Most skinks are diurnal (day-active) and typically bask on rocks or logs during the day.