Humans first discovered Komodo Dragons in 1910 in the Lesser Sunda group islands of Indonesia. Although fossils indicate that Komodo Dragons have existed for approximately 3.8 million years, there were no official records of the lizard until Dutch Lieutenant van Steyn van Hensbroek killed one in Indonesia and sent the specimen to a zoology museum, where it was determined to be a newly discovered lizard species. The Komodo Dragon population is estimated to be around 3,000 to 5,000, according to 2014 figures. It is considered an endangered species because of poaching, natural disasters, human activity, and a decline in females laying eggs.
More about Komodo Dragons:
- Komodo Dragons are the largest lizard species, and can weigh over 300 pounds (136.1 kg) and grow approximately 10 feet (3 meters) long.
- A bite from a Komodo Dragon is typically deadly because their saliva may contain around 50 types of bacteria that can result in blood poisoning.
- Komodo dragons have a strong sense of smell that allows them to detect odors from up to 2.5 miles (4 km) away, which they use to find prey.