Zookeepers Carve Jack-o’-Lanterns for Komodo Dragon

San Diego Zoo

Animal care staff at the San Diego Zoo celebrated Halloween Monday by carving jack-o’-lanterns for a Komodo dragon.

Keepers filled the pumpkins with trout and ground elk meat drizzled with fish blood.

Four-year-old Ratu flicked her tongue around to find her dinner inside the gourds, encouraging her natural behavior of scavenging and foraging.

Komodo dragons detect food by sampling the air with their tongue and sending it to the roof of its mouth.

The Komodo dragon is the largest lizard in the world. Its jaws, muscles and throat allow a Komodo dragon to swallow huge chunks of meat rapidly, while its stomach expands easily, enabling an adult to consume up to 80% of its own body weight in a single meal.

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature the Komodo dragon population is vulnerable.

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