For the first time, scientists have verified that komodo dragons murder by a one-two punch of razor-sharp teeth and a poisonous bite.
The discovery demonstrates that the Komodos’ mouths do not have poisonous bacteria, which is why their prey was ultimately killed.
A Komodo’s initial assault weakens and kills an escaping animal. As the victim collapses, the ferocious carnivore follows it and dines at its leisure.
The Komodo dragon, which is endemic to Indonesia, has long been suspected of causing blood poisoning due to the various types of bacteria in its saliva.
Nonetheless, Bryan Fry, a venom researcher at the University of Melbourne in Australia, said “the entire bacteria thing has been a scientific fairy tale.”
After having the rare opportunity to study two dragons from zoos that had to be euthanized owing to fatal illnesses, Fry and colleagues investigated the biochemistry of Komodo venom.
The dragon’s venom, according to the researchers, lowers blood pressure and speeds blood loss, making a person too weak to fight when it is injected.
Some anti-hypertensive substances found in the venom of Australia’s inland Taipan, the world’s most deadly snake, are as powerful as those found in the word’s most deadly snake.
What is a Komodo Dragon?
Flores, Gili Motang, Komodo, Padar, and Rinca are the five volcanic islands where the Komodo dragon may be found in South-East Indonesia. A monitor lizard, the Komodo dragon is a huge creature that thrives in harsh, hilly terrain covered with grassland and woodlot.
They can grow to be 3 m (10 ft) long and weigh up to 70 kg (150 lb), making them the world’s biggest lizard species. Komodo dragons are usually apex predators in their ecosystem, since they are at the top of the food chain and the pecking order.
It’s unclear whether or not they’re poisonous dragons. They can be dangerous, have extremely hard skin (literally and metaphorically), and a diverse diet, which makes most other animals in their habitat flee.
Carnivores, such as carrion eaters and large prey like deer, water buffaloes, and goats, feed on carrion. These are sneaky hunters who catch their victims off guard. Komodo dragons can only feed about fifteen times a year because they swallow their prey whole and digest it for days.
Komodo Dragons are Ancient
They’ve been around for a long time. Komodos are thought to be a relic of enormous lizards that have lived on Flores for at least 900,000 years, despite the fact that they were only found by Europeans in 1910. Komodo dragons-like fossils have been discovered and dated to be 3.8 million years old.
Are they Just Big, Dumb Lizards?
According to Morgan, who has worked with ten adult Komodos, no, Komodo dragons aren’t just big reptiles with tiny brains. These creatures, he claimed, are extremely clever.
Target training, which is when a zookeeper trains an animal to respond to different-colored props or targets in a certain way, was praised by Morgan. A yellow target, for example, might signal to an animal that it is mealtime, while a red target might signal to an animal that its keeper is ready.
According to the San Diego Zoo, this kind of training allows zoo personnel to safely encourage Komodos and other animals to exercise. Morgan added that it also serves as a way of getting to know other employees. Animals, for example, can learn to identify a colored target rather than a person giving the meal when it comes to mealtime.
They have a bigger brain case than other lizards, which may accommodate a bigger brain size, Morgan stated, noting that she wanted to be cautious not to be anthropomorphic. They’ve got the potential to learn. It is not possible for all reptiles to target train.”
Komodos Can Also Be Playful
An adult Komodo known as Kraken began exhibiting indications of playfulness with different objects and its caregivers at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park in Washington, D.C.
Kraken showed clear signs of interest, curiosity, and amusement without the desire or need to eat or play tug-of-war with toys like shoelaces, Frisbees, boxes, and blankets.
These ancient creatures have earned their reputation as real-life dragons, whether it’s fact or fiction. Who knows what else we might discover about the Komodo with future research?
Komodos are Avid Swimmers
Komodos have also added the ability to swim to their predatory repertoire, in addition to their ability to climb and run very quickly (almost as quickly as humans).
Komodos may easily swim around the islands of East Nusa Tenggara, particularly those of Komodo, Flores, Rinca, Padar, and Gili Motang. They are looking for food or partners.
Are Komodo Dragons Dangerous to Humans?
The Komodo is an example of a lizard that you may believe is non-venomous and innocuous. The Komodo is a huge lizard that poses a serious threat to humans. Even massive animals are known to be hunted and killed by Komodo dragons, but humans are more vulnerable.
As the venom speeds up blood loss, lowers blood pressure, causes enormous bleeding, and prevents wound clotting, these massive lizards have a powerful bite that injects venom into their victim. Victims, including humans, are weakened and rendered helpless as a result of these experiences.
The mouth of a Komodo dragon is like that of a shark, with razor-sharp teeth and powerful venom. According to research, a Komodo’s venom has the potential to kill a grown human within hours. The Komodo dragon’s bite may also create severe wounds that cause excruciating pain in addition to that.
The Komodo dragon has been a terrifying creature in Indonesia since its recorded deaths, causing fear among the people. Komodo, on the other hand, is said to attack infrequently. Komodo dragons were thought to be non-venomous, with their saliva packed full of germs, for decades by scientists.
Komodo dragons, on the other hand, are known to have poison glands packed with poisons and employ the poison to kill their victims, according to Bryan Fry and his colleagues in 2009.
The venom glands of the Komodo dragon are intended to “overestimate the blood loss and shock-inducing mechanical damage produced by the bite,” as described by them.
Komodo Dragon Bite
Because of its 60 sharp, serrated teeth, the Komodo dragon appears to be scary. The komodo dragon, on the other hand, has a weak bite when compared to other species. In comparison to an Australian saltwater crocodile of the same size, Komodo dragons have a bite force of only 500 to 600 PSI (39 Newtons), which is weak.
The Komodo dragon’s bite should not be capable of causing enormous injuries or impacts on other creatures or humans. So what makes a Komodo dragon’s bite so dangerous? The venom of Komodo dragons is extremely powerful, thanks to their razor-sharp teeth. Humans may be killed in a few hours by this poison.
Komodo dragons are hunters who are aggressive and forceful, and they have been known to attack humans on occasion. Bites from these creatures are excruciating. Komodos biting and ripping their victim’s flesh off has a distinct method that distinguishes them from other animals.
When biting prey or attacking humans, komodo dragons employ a customized bite-and-pull technique.
Their strong neck muscles help them take a strong bite while they do it. When biting an animal or occasionally a person, komodo dragons will frequently bite back the flesh and inject venom into the victim’s wound in a frenzy. In humans, Komodo dragons make gaping wounds that are flooded with their venom.
The venom induces lethargy or shock by hastening the blood loss phase.
Cannibalism is Normal
Komodos are infamous for devouring their own offspring, in addition to being cannibalistic. Babies Komodos instinctively climb high up in any trees after their eggs hatch to avoid being eaten by their moms or other nearby Komodos.
They may stay in the trees until they are four years old, at which point they will return to the earth and may live up to 30 years.
Komodo Dragon Human Attacks
Komodo attacks on people are rare, but they have been documented. Komodo dragons are aggressive, and they may pursue even when they are not provoked.
Villagers have sustained severe bite wounds from some Komodo dragon attacks, and others have died. Between 1974 and 2012, there have been 24 documented attacks in captivity and in the wild at Komodo National Park. Sadly, five of the assaults are deadly.
After being attacked by a giant lizard on Komodo Island in 2007, an 8-year-old boy died as a result of the fatal attacks. The youngster died as a result of his injuries and severe bleeding. A 31-year-old guy working on a sugar apple farm on Komodo Island in 2009 fell from a tree, however.
He was devoured by two Komodo dragons. Bites on the hands, legs, neck, and all over the victim’s body were reported. Shortly after the incident, the individual passed away. Individuals have been gravely injured in other Komodo attacks reports.
How Does the Komodo Dragon Attack?
Komodo dragons can detect prey up to 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) away, making killing food difficult but allowing them to bite and wait until the meal is dead at a pace of around 18 kilometers (11 miles) per hour.
Their victims die as a result of rapid blood loss, which is amplified by the venom and other infections, such as rushing to filthy water to seek refuge. They die as a result of various causes, such as running to filthy water to seek shelter.
The teeth of a Komodo dragon are its most formidable weapon, according to the Smithsonian Zoo website. They can rip and tear flesh with ease, being serrated, curved, and massive. The dragon uses its teeth to launch the last assault and starts to feast after the victim has been disarmed, strong enough to rip the creature apart.
To sum up, scientists aren’t certain whether or not Komodo dragons should be classified as venom since the purpose of the secretions has yet to be determined.
Komodos “Hunt” Using their Tongues
Komodo dragons can detect the air and identify between the particles left behind by various species thanks to their highly evolved taste buds. Their split, forked tongues may detect the death of their prey or carrion over distances of up to 9 kilometers, despite their poor eyesight and olfactory abilities.
Are Komodo Dragon’s Venomous?
Komodo dragons secrete venomous proteins in their mouths, according to recent research, much like other monitor lizards. As a result, their saliva is poisonous in some way. Komodo dragon venom, on the other hand, can take hours or even days to kill prey.
The Komodo dragon, which lives in Indonesia, has been studied by scientists for a long time. It has been discovered that it does, in fact, have venom in its mouth. The venom lowers blood pressure and accelerates blood loss, making it difficult for the victim to resist.
Venomous lizards aren’t the only ones around. This characteristic is shared by snakes, other monitor lizards, and even iguanas.
Some researchers believe that saliva, by combining with bacteria, causes blood loss and infections that lead to the prey’s death.
According to various sources, a Komodo dragon’s saliva includes a microbial cocktail of 53 strains. Other scientists, on the other hand, believe that Komodo dragons’ saliva is not particularly infectious or venomous, and they take good care of their oral hygiene.
Localized swelling, redness, bruising, and affliction were observed at the location where the dragon bites in 2005 by University of Melbourne researchers.
The Komodo dragon’s bite is characterized by low blood pressure, muscle paralysis, and hypothermia, although it’s impossible to say if the lizard is venomous based on these symptoms. Other biological roles than just injuring prey are being investigated by scientists; if so, the substance wouldn’t be “venom.”
Venomous and poisonous dragons are distinguished here. Venomous creatures inject their poison via a bite or sting, whereas poisonous creatures are those that release it when consumed or touched, therefore the difference is clear.