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Komodo Island and its Dragons

 Posted by , December 01, 2013 at 04:16:30 :: Indonesia

Komodo dragonKomodo is one of the 17,508 Indonesian islands. Komodo Island is home to over 2,000 people who are mostly descendants of former convicts, once exiled here, and who have mixed with Bugis from Sulawesi. The island which has a surface of 390km² is part of Komodo National Park. The park, established in 1980, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991 and later a Man and Biosphere Reserve.

The island is especially known for its native Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis). These giant reptiles, largest living species of lizard, often exceed 9 feet in length and can weigh more than 70 kilograms (150 lb).

Komodo dragons are carnivore; they hunt and ambush prey including invertebrates, birds, and mammals. Their diet mainly consists of deer and wild pigs that inhabit the island, but they also eat considerable amounts of carrion. They are good swimmers, and quite agile and their group behavior in hunting is exceptional in the reptile world.

Their populations, approximately 4,000 to 5,000 Komodo dragons, are restricted to the islands of Gili Motang (100), Gili Dasami (100), Rinca (1,300), Komodo (1,700), and Flores (around 2,000).

The climate on Komodo Island is tropical. The island has the lowest annual rainfall in all of Indonesia, between 800mm and 1000mm. January to beginning of April is the rainy season. Mean daily temperatures in the dry season from May to October are around 40°C and Komodo is parched by arid winds from the Australian desert. June and July are the best months to visit Komodo.

Komodo Island Map

Fun facts about Komodo Island:

  • Komodo Island is also known for its rich marine life and excellent dive sites,
  • Komodo Island (National Park) is listed as one of the New7Wonders of Nature,
  • Komodo contains one of the only seven pink sand beach in the world,
  • Satalibo, a 735 meters high peak, is the highest mountain on Komodo Island.

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