Saturday, 14 December 2019

Komodo Dragons Retrieved from Illegal Trade Set for New Home

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Laila Afifa

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  • Komodo dragon on the Rinca Island, Komodo National Park, East Nusa Tenggara, October 14, 2018.

    Komodo dragon on the Rinca Island, Komodo National Park, East Nusa Tenggara, October 14, 2018.

    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) Resource Conservation Center (BBKSDA) is set to hand over six retrieved komodo dragons that will be reintroduced to the wild at Ontoloe Island in Riung, Ngada District. The endangered animals were previously being traded illegally online.

    The animals will be moved by the BBKSDA on Saturday, July 13, and followed by the reintroduction on Monday, July 15.

    “We picked the Ontoloe Island in Riung for the komodos’ reintroduction after they were subject to illegal trade,” said Timbul Batubara today, July 11, the East Nusa Tenggara BBKSDA Chief.

    He assured that the animals would be put through the standard procedure prior to the reintroduction. They would be caged for 5-7 days to help the Komodo dragons adapt to their new home.

    According to a study by the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), the DNA test shows the similarities between the ones that were about to be traded and those aboriginal to the island, therefore the island was chosen for the location of the komodos' reintroduction.

    “There are genetic similarities with the komodo living in the Northern hemisphere of Flores Island,” said Timbul.

    Besides in Komodo Island, existing places where the dragons are able to live are Manggarai, West Manggarai, and Ngada.

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