Komodo Dragon ‘at Risk of Extinction’ as Sea Levels Rise

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has warned on Saturday that Komodo Dragons are at risk of extinction due to rising global temperature and sea levels.

The IUCN, a global authority in the field of nature conservation and sustainable use of natural resources, released its latest update of the Red List of Threatened Species.

The Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis), which is endemic to Indonesia and exists only in the World Heritage-listed Komodo National Park and neighboring Flores, has moved from Vulnerable to Endangered on the IUCN Red List.

The rising global temperature and subsequent sea levels brought about by climate change will reduce the Komodo dragon’s suitable habitat by at least 30% in the next 45 years.

The Komodo dragons’ habitat is also increasingly being threatened by ongoing human activities, making it more fragmented.

“Because of human pressure, the forest is slowly being cut down and disappearing, and the savannah is affected by fires and degradation. That is why the animals are really in small little pockets,” said Gerardo Garcia, curator of vertebrates and invertebrates at Chester Zoo, to The Guardian.

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