49 photos
Komodo Island is a small Indonesian island of under 400 square kilometers, which lies in the chain of islands that protrudes east from Java, to Bali, Lombok, Sumbawa, Komodo, and then to Flores. Historically, it is famous as the primary home of the Komodo Dragon, in the Monitor family and the world’s largest living lizard. They grow up to ten feet long and over150 pounds. They are true carnivores, and they are known to hunt in a coordinated manner to ambush mammals, birds, and invertebrates. They also eat carrion. They have a keen sense of small – at one point, the photographer went ashore from the dive boat, to a deserted beach with no visible animals, and within five minutes there were three of these wonderful but large and intimidating creatures coming toward the visitors with deliberate speed. They have been known to attack humans, though, interestingly, our local guides were able to keep them at bay using nothing more than a ten-foot pole, with a “Y” at the end. They would put the Y against the shoulder of approaching dragons, and this seemed to do the trick.

The dragon’s bite is particularly dangerous, because, in addition to the trauma of the bite itself, these animals can inject a deadly venom. It was long thought that the dragons skill their prey by infecting it with pathogenic bacteria; but recent discoveries have shown that these lizards actually have “the most complex venom-delivery system known in reptiles.”

The other reason Komodo has become well-known in recent years is that the island is situated within the greatest and most biologically-diverse marine ecoregion in the world.
This extraordinary ecosystem is home to 76% of the world’s coral species and at least 2,228 of the 6,000 coral reef fish species in the world. The coral region is referred to as the “Coral Triangle,” and it is the beneficiary of a major preservation project, started in 2007 by the World Wildlife Federation.

Categories & Keywords
Category:Animals
Subcategory:Wildlife
Subcategory Detail:
Keywords:Indonesia, Komodo, bacteria, beach, biologically, carnivore, coral, diverse, dragon, ecoregion, ecosystem, federation, flores, infection, island, java, lizard, lombok, marine, monitor, prey, sumbawa, triangle, venom, wildlife, wildlife, world

Bangka Island, Indonesia

Bangka Island, Indonesia

Seven Seas, Komodo Island 0406

Seven Seas, Komodo Island 0406

Tatawa Kecil surrounding reef, Komodo Island, Indonesia 0332

Tatawa Kecil surrounding reef, Komodo Island, Indonesia 0332

Tatawa Kecil surrounding reef, Komodo Island, Indonesia 0328

Tatawa Kecil surrounding reef, Komodo Island, Indonesia 0328

Tatawa Kecil surrounding reef, Komodo Island, Indonesia 0336

Tatawa Kecil surrounding reef, Komodo Island, Indonesia 0336

Anemonefish 5075

Anemonefish 5075

Anemonefish 5076

Anemonefish 5076

Anemonefish 0322

Anemonefish 0322

Anemonefish 5261

Anemonefish 5261

Anemonefish 5250

Anemonefish 5250

Anemonefish 5279

Anemonefish 5279

BangaiCardinalfish 4677

BangaiCardinalfish 4677

Anthius 4057

Anthius 4057

Pom Pom Crab on Starfish 4395

Pom Pom Crab on Starfish 4395

Komodo Dragon 0015

Komodo Dragon 0015

Komodo Dragon 5428

Komodo Dragon 5428

Komodo Dragon 5433

Komodo Dragon 5433

Komodo Dragon 5436

Komodo Dragon 5436

Ribbon Eel 4688

Ribbon Eel 4688

Ribbon Eel 4691

Ribbon Eel 4691