Komodo dragons are the largest lizards on Earth and are found in the Sunda region of Indonesia. They are named for one of the islands where they are found.
The Komodo dragon lives in the tropical forests, and young dragons live in the trees until they're about 8 months old. This offers them protection from older dragons.
Large Komodo dragons can be over 10 feet long and weigh over 363 pounds. The males are larger than the females. When they are young, Komodo dragons are green and banded in yellow and black. The adult coloration is grayish-red or brown.
Komodo dragons mate in July and August, and the female lays as many as 30 eggs in September. This is the cooler part of the year in Indonesia. She buries the eggs, and they hatch about eight months later. Komodo dragons are ready to breed when they are 9 or 10 years old and can live to be 50 years old.
Though they usually scavenge, Komodo dragons also hunt for their food. They overpower prey and bite it with large, sharp, serrated teeth. Even if the prey survives, it eventually succumbs to the bacteria that is found in the dragon's saliva. These powerful lizards can take down prey as large as humans, horses and water buffalo.