Saturday, February 11, 2012

Komodo Dragon - The Giant Lizard

Komodo Dragon - The Giant Lizard
The large, curved claws are used in self-defense as well as to eat food

Phylum :  Chordata
Class :  Reptilia
Order :  Squamata
Suborder : Lacertilia
Family : Varanidae
Genus : Varanus
Protection status : Vulnerable
Diet : Carnivore 
Habitat :  They live in hot and dry places, open grasslands and mostly in lowlands.

Komodo dragons are the  largest and heaviest lizards in the world. They are native to Indonesia and inhabit just four islands: Flores, Pandar, Rintja and the Komodo island. The scientific name of Komodo dragon is Varanus komodoensis. Komodo dragons are also called as Komodo monitors, Giant monitors, Land crocodiles and Oras. Their life expectancy is upto 20 - 40 years. Their sense of smell is the primary method of detecting food.

Komodo Dragon - The Giant Lizard

The Komodo dragon's saliva contains different strains of toxic bacteria that cause deadly infections in the prey. When it bites the prey, it injects the victim with a venom. Though the prey may not succumb to its injuries right away, the patient Komodo keeps following the animal with its immense sense of smell and eventually claims its victim.

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Photos were taken at Columbus Zoo, Ohio.

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