How Fast Is a Komodo Dragon?

Komodo dragons are one of the fiercest predators in nature. Komodos use camouflage to attack the prey’s feet and hurt them, but they can also chase after their victim. Which makes us wonder, how fast is a Komodo dragon exactly?

Komodo dragons can accelerate up to 13 miles per hour, but they can only maintain this speed for a few hundred feet. So, they aren’t capable runners. That is also why a Komodo’s primary method of hunting is to surprise and attack prey, not chase after it. 

Komodo dragons are unique lizards that can run fast and are capable swimmers. The speed they have is used to accelerate and attack the animal when it is close to the Komodo. 

Komodo dragon running

Can Komodo Dragons Run?

Contrary to how komodos look, they’re good runners.

A male Komodo dragon can weigh anywhere from 79-91 kg and have a length of approximately 2.6 meters

Keeping in mind the size of a Komodo dragon, the fact that a Komodo dragon can accelerate and run at a speed of 13 miles per hour is nothing short of amazing. 

While a Komodo dragon’s speed alone is a wonder on its own, it cannot maintain this speed for long distances. 

Komodo dragons can only maintain the speed of 13 miles per hour for distances close to a couple of hundred feet. However, knowing how Komodo dragons hunt makes it clear why even accelerating for a few hundred feet is extremely helpful for them when chasing their prey. 

Komodo dragons don’t have to run for most of their time, they prefer walking, and that is how they spend their life. 

They can walk close to 7 miles a day, but generally, they prefer to stay in their area of birth and close to their vicinity. Since they’re the apex predators, they don’t need to run to escape a fight or save themselves from being preyed on. 

Stamina is usually needed to run long distances and maintain that speed. Usually, prey who run from their predator has great energy because that is how they survive the threat that threatens their life. 

Komodo dragons do not need great stamina. 

A Komodo dragon’s endurance could be better regarding stamina; as a result, as previously stated, they can only run for short distances, the maximum being a quarter of a mile.

It only needs that 13 mph speed for a relatively short time when attacking its victim. More so than its speed, it gains its stamina by patience and waiting for its prey to die.

Komodo dragon walking

Can a Komodo Dragon Swim?

Despite being capable runners and great hunters, their marvel doesn’t stop there. Komodo dragons are also great swimmers, and that’s how they travel between neighboring islands they live on. 

Scientists theorize that swimming is how Komodo dragons first traveled from their native land of Australia to the lesser Sunda islands, where they now reside.

Keeping this fact in mind makes Komodo even more interesting. 

Their swimming has some bounds; they can only swim to a certain extent and at a certain speed. Let’s talk about how good Komodo dragons are in the swimming department.

While it may be hard to believe at first, Komodo dragons appear just as natural in the water as they appear on land.

While the exact figure of how fast a Komodo dragon is in water is yet to be discovered by scientists, it’s generally assumed that Komodo dragons swim much slower than they run. 

Recall that a Komodo dragon can only run for a short distance. Still, unless they’re running, Komodo dragons are relatively slower animals walking at a pedestal speed.

That means that they move much faster in water when compared to land. 

Researchers have observed that the smoothness of a Komodo dragon’s swimming patterns allows it to cover surprising distances with relative ease, which makes Komodo dragons all the more interesting. 

Swimming Komodo dragon in Indonesia

How Long Can a Komodo Dragon Swim?

Komodo dragons are now known to be skillful swimmers.

Komodo dragons can swim close to 1000 feet without resting or getting out of water. That makes them talented in swimming, but how can they muster swimming for such long distances?

The Komodo dragon’s body is made for swimming, which might not be evident initially, but when looked at with a keen eye makes much more sense. 

They can move in the water with great speed, possibly due to their strong limbs, which assist them in paddling quickly.

Komodo dragons have long tails that move left and right through the water.

The waters in which the Komodo dragons swim are the South Pacific water, which is warm enough for a Komodo to swim without it getting chilled to the point that the metabolism gets slowed down and it’s unable to move. 

The thick skin also protects them from the cold, which may result from spending longer in the water. 

Komodo Dragon at Honolului Zoo

Final Thoughts on How Fast Is a Komodo Dragon

Komodo dragons are the apex predator, and there’s a good reason for it. They’re talented in all departments, whether running fast, swimming, or outsmarting their prey despite their poor stamina. 

The largest lizard in the world is nothing short of a wonder that deserves protection from threats against them and keen attention to learn more about their ways and how they live. 

Komodo dragon walking along the shoreline

FAQs

How Quickly Do Komodos Travel?

Komodo Dragons can run at the speed of 13 miles an hour. They can also swim and are suspected of traveling faster in water than on land. Komodos can also walk roughly 7 miles per day. However, it’s at a slower pace than their running and swimming.

What Do Komodo Dragons Use Swimming For?

Komodo dragons swim between neighboring islands where they are found. That is how they travel between the islands. 

How Smart Is a Komodo Dragon?

Komodo dragons are brilliant animals and one of the most competent living lizards. That is how they can hunt boars and deer while being much slower than them. The patience and camouflage of a Komodo dragon help it.