Komodo Island tours. Dragon on Komodo Island forest walking at camera. Komodo Islands Indonesia

Komodo Island Dragons

Komodo lizards - truly one of the most mysterious, amazing and fantastic creatures on Earth

Indonesia has about 18,000 islands. Komodo lizards live only on five of them, closer to the center of the Indonesian archipelago: on the island of Komodo itself, on the neighboring island of Rinca, on the island of Gili Motang, and finally on tiny island Flores. This is the largest of the currently existing lizards in the world, some representatives of this species can grow more than 3 meters in length and weigh more than 100 kilograms. However, in captivity, these lizards reach even larger sizes - the largest known specimen, for which there is reliable data, was contained in the St. Louis Zoo and had a length of 3.13 m and weighed 166 kg. The natives of the islands call it the "land crocodile".

The unique Komodo National Park is known worldwide, protected by UNESCO, and includes a group of islands with adjacent warm waters and coral reefs of over 170 thousand hectares. Currently, due to a sharp reduction in the number of large wild ungulates on the islands due to poaching, even adult monitor lizards males are forced to switch to smaller prey. Hunger sometimes causes death of monitor lizards.

Of course, other, no less interesting animals are found on Komodo Island, although in most cases they nevertheless inevitably remain in the shadow of the main ruler of these places. The main feature of the natural world of Komodo Island is that it is transitional between the flora and fauna of the Australian-Asian Oceania and Asia: most of the mammals living on the island are Asian in origin, while birds and reptiles are mostly Australian.

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Komodo Island tours. Dragon on Komodo Island forest walking at camera. Komodo Islands Indonesia.
Recently, uncontrolled use of antibiotics has caused the rapid development of microbial strains resistant to antibiotic therapy. This important problem forces pharmaceutical companies all over the world to develop more and more advanced types of antibiotics, while the "raw materials" for production are often extremely non-standard. As it turned out, the substances contained in the blood of a Komodo monitor lizard can help specialists in creating a new type of antibacterial drugs. These lizards rarely get sick. At the same time, it is surprising that the Komodo lizard eats a large amount of rotten meat, and the dragon's saliva is literally teeming with pathogenic bacteria. This led researchers to the idea that the immune system of reptiles may have unique properties.

Komodo Island monitor lizard - the largest lizards in the world

Komodo and Rinca Islands are the largest in the reserve. Their main attraction - the "dragons", giant monitor lizards, not found anywhere else on the planet. The Komodo monitor lizard, or the giant Indonesian monitor lizard, or the Komodos monitor lizard (Latin Varanus komodoensis) is a species of lizards from the monitor lizard family.

For centuries, the Chinese came to Komodo in search of precious pearls. Returning to their homeland, they told stories about big scaly, fire-breathing monster-cannibals - there is an opinion that these stories are the basis of the Chinese dragon myth, or at least reinforce it. No wonder that in those days they seemed to people to be real monsters. After all, what they had to meet was a huge creature covered with scales, a cannibal, and although in reality the Komodo dragon does not spew fire, his breath is really smelly than any other creature known to man.

If someone is bitten by a Komodo monitor lizard, then he really should wait for serious trouble. They all the time expire smelly, extremely nasty saliva, oozing around the edges of their sinister mouth. According to the latest calculations, the devil's potion emitted by him contains at least 57 different types of deadly poisonous bacteria. They are so poisonous that without emergency medical care wounds will never heal, therefore, in the absence of emergency treatment, the chances of dying from blood poisoning or infection are more than real.

On top of that, according to a recent study, the Komodo dragons may themselves be poisonous - that is, in fact, they are the biggest poisonous creatures on the planet. For the first time, scientists have found in their mouths glands that produce poison as potent as some of the most dangerous snakes on Earth. Komodo lizard: born to kill. The average length of the Komodo monitor lizard is 2.25 - 2.6 meters, weight is 35-60 kg. With good nutrition, the animal grows up to 3 meters and weighs more than a hundred kilograms.

Many fabulous creatures have real prototypes - for example, in the world there are lizards that are very similar to dragons. No, they cannot spew flames from their mouths, but they have a frightening forked tongue, strong muscles, natural bloodthirstiness and have been known to people since very old times. These "dragons" are Komodo lizards who live on some Indonesian islands and often attack people for which were called by the locals in honor of the fabulous monsters. It sounds really frightening and cool, but these creatures recently surprised scientists with another feature - a thick layer of armor was found under their skin, designed to protect against heavy blows.

For the first time, the presence of a protective layer of skin in monitor lizards became known in 1928. Then a naturalist named William Douglas Byrden mentioned in his notes that poachers began to catch giant lizards in order to sell their skin, but it had no value. The fact is that under it there is a layer of many small bones that are able to protect the body of the monitor lizards from heavy blows and bites and complicates the cutting of the skin. Since then, the natural armor of lizards was almost not of interest to scientists, but recently, researchers decided to carefully study it. Scientists are sure that the lizards need armor to protect themselves from their relatives. After examining the skin of a young monitor lizard, researchers noticed that he had no subcutaneous armor. It follows from this that it develops only in adulthood, when giant lizards begin to war with each other for territory.

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