Komodo Dragon Reproduction

The beasts were unstoppable, and once they laid their eggs, we knew all of mankind would be doomed.  (Reproduction )

Not surprisingly, it is very difficult for a dragon to find a mate. Mostly, this is due to the fact that there are at least 3 male dragons for every female. That may sound peculiar, but it is true. Yet, no one knows why, and not surprisingly, it is hard enough detecting the males from the females. This is also true for the dragons themselves. Males and females look pretty much the same, and all of the sexual organs are hidden inside the singe hole called the cloaca, which is located at the bottom of the body. So, how then exactly do these creatures mate?

Well, during the months of July, the blisteringly hot months on Komodo, mating begins. In order to tell each other apart, the dragons use a “perfume” of sorts. Now surprisingly, only the males exhibit this scent, so when they walk by a lizard with no scent, they know it is a female.

Most of the time, a male will spot a female at diner, one of the only times dragons are seen together. Once the male spots the female, he attempts to attract her. He does so by approaching her from behind, and then touching her on the cheek with his tongue. He then proceeds to lick her back, and then scratch her across the back with his claws. This creates a huge scraping noise that is audible 27 m away. The female responds with a lowered head and puffed throat. She later submits however, when the male nudges her on the side of the face, and then proceeds to mount.

Copulation takes about 12 minutes, and about a month afterwards, the female is ready to lay eggs. She chooses her nesting site carefully; it is typically a sandy area where she can dig. The dragons may lay about 20 eggs, and the pile is called a clutch. After the eggs are hatched, many females stay around for a few weeks, however, her duty as a parent is over as soon as the eggs are laid.

Dragon eggs do not resemble chicken eggs in the slightest bit. They are three inches long and are rubbery and tough. They are also elastic and expand as the baby inside grows. This is so true that the dragon eggs are about 50% bigger when hatched then when laid. Typically it takes about eight and a half months for the dragons in the egg to develop, and they typically hatch in April. They then hatch out by use of a special tooth called an egg tooth. This razor like tooth falls out as soon as the lizard breaks free.