Komodo Dragon

A komodo dragon at ZSL London Zoo.

What they look like

The world’s largest, and heaviest, lizards. Komodo dragons have grey brownish scales that provide camouflage in their surroundings. Juveniles are more colourful starting off life as with red and yellow bands. Komodo dragons have bowed legs, a large muscular tail, rounded snout and forked yellow tongue. They have sharp serrated teeth and powerful limbs able to propel them in quick bursts of up to 11 miles per hour. 

Animal facts

If the dragon’s prey escapes after being bitten, deadly infections from the bacteria living in the dragon's razor sharp teeth kill the victim within a week. The dragon then tracks by smell to feed on the dead flesh - eating up to 80% of its body weight in just one feeding.

What they eat

Live prey and carrion including reptiles, birds, eggs, mammals, baby dragons and even occasional people

Habitat

Arid forest and savannah

Where they live

Found mainly on the Indonesian islands of Komodo, Rintja, Padar, and Flores

Threats

Limited habitat and illegal hunting for trophies, skins and feet

Population
Currently stable
Order
Squamata
Family
Varanidae
Life span
Up to 30 years