(WSYR-TV) — The Rosamond Gifford Zoo introduced its newest addition to the family, a 6-year-old Komodo Dragon named Naga.
The 5-foot-long reptile is among the largest species of lizard in the world. Naga is on loan from the Memphis Zoo and moved into the exhibit near the aviary.
“This has been a really exciting year for our awesome zoo, starting with the birth of a baby elephant in January, the recent addition of a jellyfish exhibit, and now this amazing creature has joined our zoo family,” said County Executive Ryan McMahon.
Species: Varanus komodoensis
Habitat: Lesser Sunda Islands of Indonesia
Diet: Carnivore. In the wild their primary diet includes Timor Deer, water buffalo, and wild pigs; at the zoo: mice, rabbit, quail chicks, hard-boiled eggs.
Lifespan: Up to 30 years.
Reproduction: Komodos mate from May to August and females lay up to 30 eggs at a time in September.
Conservation status: Vulnerable. Only about 3,000 remain in the wild in the protected Komodo National Park in Indonesia.
- Komodo Dragons are the biggest and heaviest lizards in the world.
- The largest on record measured over 10 feet in length and weighed more than 330 pounds.
- Komodos are the dominant predators in their island habitat, and often hunt in packs.
- They are fast eaters and can consume up to 80 percent of their body weight in one meal.
- They can run 11 miles an hour for short bursts of time, generally in pursuit of prey.
- Komodo dragons have scaly skin and a dragon-like appearance. Their color ranges from black to yellowish gray, they have long claws and forked tongues.
- They have an advanced sense of smell which helps them hunt prey.
- The babies live in trees, but adults get too heavy to climb trees – a good thing for the young because adult Komodos will eat smaller dragons!
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