Finke Gorge National Park

Finke Gorge NP | Boggy Hole | Palm Valley | Fauna | Flora

The Sand Goanna (Varanus gouldii) are one of the many reptiles that have been sighted in the Finke Gorge National Park. This species is the most widespread of the goannas that can be found throughout most of the mainland in Australia.

The Sand Goanna colour is very variable: light yellow to blackish brown with dark, dense speckling and pale spots. There is a prominent pale-edged dark strip that runs back from the eye. Throat is often streaked with grey. The tail is dark with pale bands and the end third to quarter of the tail is a cream to yellow colour, without any pattern. The Varanus gouldii flavirufus sub specie is paler and usually redder in appearance.

Known as the Sand Goanna or Gould’s Goanna, there are two sub species:

  • V g flavirufus occupies the sandy desert region, and is usually paler and generally redder;
  • V g gouldii occurs over the remaining regions of Australia;

    with both foraging widely over dry open habitats.

Check out our Fauna Index for more information on the Sand Goanna and our Goanna, Monitor and Perentie information.


  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Reptilia
  • Order: Squamata
  • Family: Varanidae
  • Genus: Varanus
  • Subgenus: Varanus
  • Species: V. gouldii
  • Sub Species:
    V. g. flavirufus
    V. g. gouldii
  • Binomial name: Varanus gouldii