Komodo Dragons (Varanus komodoensi) represent the world’s largest lizard species and live only on the islands Komodo, Rinca, Flores, Gili Mota, and Gili Dasami in Lombok, Indonesia.
The Komodo Dragon is the largest lizard in the world with an average length of 2-3 m and a weight up to 150 KG. The large size is related to enlargement tendency the growing body of certain animals that live on a small island because of the absence of carnivore mamals on the island where komodo live, and decreasing the rate of metabolism smaller dragon. Because of their size these lizards occupy the position of a top predator that dominate the ecosystems in which they live.
Komodo Dragons were found by western researchers in 1910. Their bodies have great and amazing reputation which makes them popular in the zoos. Komodo Dragons in the wild habitat have been shrink by human activities and therefore IUCN inserted Komodo Dragons as a vulnerable species to extinction. The large lizard (komodo) is now protected under Indonesian law and a national park, namely Komodo National Park, established to protect them.
Having low abilities concerning hearing and vision, Komodo Dragons use the sense of smell as a primary food detector. They have a forked tongue for flavor processing through a special organ in the roof of their mouth, almost in the same way as snakes do. Komodo Dragons have large claws which enable them to climb on trees, additionally they are able to swim. On land they reach a speed up to 20 km/h. As cold blooded reptiles they like to heat up their bodies especially in the morning-time after having been cooled down in the colder nights.
The bites of these animals are very vulnerable because of the bacteria that live in the mouth of these lizards, but the researchers showed that the direct effect that appears at the bite wounds were caused by the entry of medium venom.
Komodo Dragon’s saliva also has a variety of deadly bacteria in it, if a bitten prey is not outright killed and can escape, the unlucky prey generally will die within a week because of the infection. The most deadly bacteria in the saliva of Komodo Dragons is the bacterium Pasteurella multocida which seems highly lethal, it is known through experiments in lab mices. Because the Komodo Dragon seemed immune to its own microbes, much research was done to find antibacterial molecules in the hope it can be used for human treatment.
Komodo Dragons have inspired some of the most terrifying monsters in the history of some Hollywood movies.
The following video is showing the whole environment where Komodo Dragons live, also many other animals that live on the islands.
Nature’s Perfect Predators- Komodo Dragon (by AnimalPlanetTV)