Komodo Dragon - world’s largest extant lizard

Baku, April 28, AZERTAC

If you are skeptical enough not to believe in dinosaurs, dragons or any other mysterious creatures, you probably have not confronted the Komodo Dragon - the world’s largest extant lizard.

Growing up to 3 metres (10 feet) in total length and attaining a weight of about 135 kg (about 300 pounds), the so-called “dragon” is a manitor lizard of the family Varanidae.

The beast animal inhabits the Komodo Islands, as well as a few neighbouring islands of the Lesser Sunda Islands of Indonesia.

These endangered species became extremely popular among the ecotourists due to their large size and predatory habits.

According to the National Geographic, the Komodo dragons will eat almost anything, including carrion, deer, pigs, smaller dragons, and even large water buffalo.

While hunting, Komodo dragons rely on camouflage and patience, lying in wait for passing prey.

As a victim ambles by, the dragon springs, using its sharp claws, and serrated, shark-like teeth to eviscerate its prey.

The Komodo dragon’s hunting style is not the only danger for its victims, as the massive lizard has venom glands loaded with toxins. Their venom lowers blood pressure, causing massive bleeding, preventing clotting, and inducing shock.

In 1980, Indonesia established Komodo National Park to protect the Komodo dragon and its habitat.

Now a UNESCO World Heritage site, Komodo National Park has established patrols to prevent poaching.

It also works with local communities to build awareness of the species and the importance of protecting it.

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