An endangered species that only lives on 5 Indonesian islands means we have a lot more to learn about this creature.
Let's look at 5 more unusual facts about them ...
1. They are not dragons
Despite their name, the Komodo Dragon is no dragon at all. They are the largest lizards in the world. They reach 2.6 metres in length and can weigh up to 91 kilograms.
2. Females don't need males to reproduce
Without males, females can still produce eggs. This asexual form of reproduction is called parthenogenisis. In this process, the mother's chromosomes are doubled up and so the offspring derive all their genes from her.
3. A group of Komodo Dragons is called a Bank
Although they are rarely seen as a collective. Komodo Dragons usually spend their time alone, only coming together to eat and breed.
4. Dragon saliva contains over 50 types of bacteria
No surprise there since they don't brush their teeth BUT they also have a mild venom that acts as an anticoagulant, so by using their powerful jaws to inflict a nasty wound on potential prey, the wound stays open and continuously bleeds, leading to shock and all that nasty bacteria can easily enter the wound causing sepsis. All of this leads to a very weak and vulnerable prey that is easily overpowered by the Komodo.
5. New borns live in trees for several months
Adult Komodo Dragons are known to eat the young. The babies have sharp claws to climb up trees after birth to protect themselves from this.