Komodo Dragon Introduction
The Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis), also known as the Komodo monitor, is a species of lizard found in the Indonesian islands of Komodo, Rinca, Flores, Gili Motang, and Padar A member of the monitor lizard family Varanidae, it is the largest living species of lizard, growing to a maximum length of 3 metres (10 ft) in rare cases and weighing up to approximately 70 kilograms (150lb).
The Komodo Dragon is not only the largest lizard in the world, but it also one of the most aggressive and is so powerful that it is able to take prey many times its own size.
However, Komodo Dragons are also in severe danger in their natural environments as hunting and habitat loss, along with a shortage of prey, has led to population declines on the few islands where they are found in the Komodo National Park, meaning that they are now listed on the IUCN’s Red List and have some legal protection.
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Hey Kids, my name is Keith the Komodo Dragon and I am very happy to meet you. Learn more about me and my species @ www.kids.nationalgeographic.com
Key Komodo Dragon Data
- Lifespan:30 years.
- Scientific Name:Varanus komodoensis.
- Mass:Female. 68-73 kg(149.9-160.9 pounds). Male. 79-91 kg(174.1-200.6 pounds)
- Length:2m – 3.1m (6.6ft – 10.3ft).
- Region found:The Lesser Sunda Islands of Komodo, Rinca, Gili Motang and Gili Dasami.
- Population Status:Vulnerable.
- Current population trend:Unspecified.
- Sexual maturity:5-7 years.
The Komodo Dragon is a fascinating creature, and at the same time, also quite aggressive. And, it’s actually a Dragon! So, Dragon’s do exist however this one doesn’t breathe fire.
Now that you know more about the Komodo Dragon by learning the key data above, be sure also to check out the fun facts. When you are finished learning the facts, try answering the questions in the Q&A corner on the bottom right side of the page.
Download questions about the Komodo Dragon here: Komodo Dragon (answers are on this page)
Teachers. For more in depth work sheets on the Komodo Dragon. Click on Kidskonnect Worksheets
Komodo Dragon Fun Facts for Kids
- # 1. Komodo’s come in a variety of colors, including blue, orange, green and gray. Their skin is rough and durable, reinforced with bony plates called osteoderms. They have long claws and a large, muscular tail.
- # 2. Their sense of smell is their primary food detector, however. According to the Smithsonian Zoo, Komodo dragons, like snakes, use their forked tongues to sample the air, and then touch the tongue to the roof of their mouth, where special organs analyze the airborne molecules. If the left tongue tip has more concentrated “smell,” the dragon knows that their prey is approaching from the left.
- # 3. No matter where they live, the Komodo likes extreme heat. It is usually around 95 degrees Fahrenheit (35 degrees Celsius) with 70-percent humidity on the islands of Indonesia, according to the San Diego Zoo.
- # 4. The Komodo has a unique way of killing its prey. First, it springs up and knocks the prey over with its huge feet. Then they use their sharp, serrated teeth — which are a lot like a shark’s — to shred their prey to death. If the prey escapes, it will die within 24 hours of blood poisoning because the Komodo’s saliva contains 50 strains of bacteria, according to National Geographic. With its fantastic sense of smell, the Komodo will find the dead animal and finish its meal.
- # 5. Komodo Dragons mate between May and August and females lay about 30 eggs each in September.
- # 1. Where can Komodo Dragons be found?
- # 2. At what age does the Komodo Dragon sexually mature?
- # 3. What is the preferred temperature of the Komodo Dragon?
- # 4. How many strains of bacteria are in the Komodo Dragon’s saliva?
- # 5. How many eggs can a female Komodo dragon lay in mating season?