Sand Burrows of the Gould's Goanna

01st January 2016


We came across a young Gould's Goanna (Varanus Gouldii) AKA Sand Monitor /Gould's Monitor, at Kogan in the Western Downs of Queensland on New Year's Day.  We turned the vehicle around quickly so we could get a better look at the monitor which was on the edge of the road.  It took of at lightning speed into one of it's many sand burrows inside the base of a magnificent hollow tree on the road verge.  On closer inspection of the road verge, there were many wide, shallow burrows around the perimeter of this tree. Unfortunately the only photo we got of him was taken on the phone from the vehicle and was quite blury.

The Gould's Goanna is found in dry open habitats of Australia.  It is predominantly ground dwelling, and uses it's shallow burrow in the sand for shelter.  Like all monitor's, it isn't too fussy about what it eats, and will consume a diet of other lizards, mice, snakes, eggs, carrion and pretty much anything it can find.

This sighting of the Gould's Goanna is a first for both of us, having only previously seen the Lace Monitor's (Varanus Varius) that reside around our home range in the Darling Downs of South-East Queensland.

J & B.

One of the many burrows of the Gould's Goanna (Varanus Gouldii) at Kogan, Queensland

There was a large burrow inside this hollow tree that the Gould's Goanna (Varanus Gouldii) hid in at Kogan, Queensland

One of the many burrows of the Gould's Goanna (Varanus Gouldii) at Kogan, Queensland

Juvenile Gould's Goanna (Varanus Gouldii) at Kogan, Queensland