Komodo Dragon is the largest living lizard in the world. It is characterized by massive size, flat head, curved legs and thick tail. Its name comes from the stories by which a creature that resembled a dragon once lived on the Indonesian island of Komodo. Locals call it “dances” or “earth crocodile.”
According to the National Zoological Park Smithsonian, the average length of this lizard ranges from 2.4 to 2.7 meters, although they can reach and incredible 3 meters. Females grow up to 1.8 meters. The average weight is approximately 90kg.
It is found in different colors, including blue, orange, green and gray. His skin is rough and rugged, reinforced by bony plates called osteoderms. It has long claws and big muscular tail.
It is characterized by good kind – can see objects at a distance of 300 meters. This lizard is also quite fast – can reach speeds up to 20 km / h, but only for short distances and prefers to fish peacefully, or wait until the prey does not find the way, although it can last for hours.
The senses of smell and taste his main detectors of food. It uses its forked tongue to test the air and then with his tongue touches the upper part of the mouth where special organs analyze molecules in the air. If left tip of the tongue more concentrated “smell,” then he knows that the lizard prey approaching the left side.
He eats meat and is very fierce hunter because you can eat a very large prey such as buffalo, deer, pigs and even humans. Also eat smaller lizards of its kind. According to “National Geographic”, a komodo country can eat up to 80% of its weight in one meal.
These lizards are very rare and are found in the wild only five islands – Small Sundanese islands of Komodo, Rink, Gili and Gili Dasami Motang – all within Komodo National Park and the island of Flores where the lizard move freely.
Their habitats ranging from tropical dry forests to monsoon deciduous forests, but no matter where they live, they love the extreme heat. The islands of Indonesia temperature is usually around 35 degrees Celsius with 70 percent humidity. They live in holes they dig or simply innovate, and dual purpose – overnight warming during the day to cool.
They can reproduce sexually and asexually (asexual reproduction means produce children without the help of the opposite sex). When babies are born lizards, they are only about 30 cm long and immediately fled the trees not to eat the mother or other large lizards. By the age of 4 years and reach 1.2 meters returning to live on earth. Those that survive still have a long life – a komodo dragon can live more than 30 years.
Komodo dragon belong to the group of endangered species, but is thought to be quite vulnerable. World Animal Foundation estimated that their population of 6,000 individuals in the wild.