The Komodo dragon is so endangered that it has been moved onto the endangered animal list.
Previously the reptile had been on the vulnerable list according to the IUCN red list of threatened species.
The komodo dragon is the world’s largest lizard. Its loss of number has been due to rising water levels driven by the climate crisis shrinking its habitat.
The komodo dragon is found only on a few Indonesian islands. It lives on the edge of the forest or in open savannah, rarely venturing higher than 700 meters above sea level. Rising water levels are set to affect 30% of its habitat in the next 45 years, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN.
However, the komodo dragons’ habitat is becoming increasingly fragmented by human activity. This makes populations less genetically healthy and more vulnerable.
Growing up to 3 meters long and weighing more than 150kg, komodos feed mainly on forest-dwelling pigs, deer, buffalo, and fruit bats. When they attack, their venomous saliva causes their prey’s blood pressure to suddenly drop and stops it from clotting, sending them into shock.