In Indonesia there is a type of lizard that can reach sizes that you may have thought only existed in fairy tales. These unique reptiles have been able to develop in an area where there is little for large animals to live on. They were there long before humans but like many organisms around the world they are subject to the growing human populations. These monitor lizards are known as Komodo dragons.
The Komodo dragon, also known as Varanus komodoensis, may reach lengths of up to three meters and may weigh as much as 500 pounds. They have claws that may be as long as ten centimeters, teeth that operate like little scalpels and saliva that contains a deadly bacteria, staphylococcus (Cherrington, 1997). These monitors are known to be strong swimmers and may dive down to depths of 15 feet. Most importantly they possess great intelligence, displayed best when they hunt or search out their next meal.