Komodo Dragons attack Indonesians, becoming more aggressive
Komodo Dragons on the tropical islands of southeastern Indonesia have been living side by side with their human neighbours for years, but the islanders have been noticing an increasing amount of attacks on humans lately, leading them to believe that the animals are becoming more aggressive.
These reptiles are endangered, with only about 3,000 to 5,000 left in the wild, and most of them living in the Komodo National Park, where rangers help to take care of them, but recently one ranger was attacked and now has jagged gashes on his arm and ankle.
The dragons can grow to 10 feet long and weigh up to 300 pounds.
Ahmad Fanani, Komodo Survival Programme Conservationist: "We are helping the national park to monitor population of the Komodo dragons and measure their growth rate. We hope our activity can assist the park management in dealing with the dragon's habitat and population."
The dragons produce a toxic venom when they bite their prey, which then can take a week to die before the dragon can eat it.
They have co-existed with humans for a long time, but recently rangers have noticed people being attacked when the dragon has been unprovoked.
Local villagers say that the dragons have become increasingly aggressive.
Haji Amin, Villager "How could this happen? How could the dragons get so aggressive? We are concerned by this. We have lived alongside Komodo dragons for decades without being attacked. They never used to attack us while walking in the forest alone or attack our children. We hope these dragon attacks stop."
However, they cannot become extinct as they are a source of income for many people and they are a protected species.