Virginia Aquarium Blog

FLORES: PART 2

Posted by in Conservation, Komodos, Reptiles

by Virginia Aquarium Herpetologist Colin Walker It’s early morning, and still dark outside. The alarm goes off at about the same time the roosters in the yard next door start crowing. Brandon and I collect our gear, take a moment to enjoy our last bit of air conditioning for a while, and go upstairs to the hotel roof to join Achmad and Deni for a sunrise breakfast. As we eat, we continue our conversation from lunch the previous day, discussing other issues the Komodo Survival Program (KSP) has dealt with…read more

Flores: Part One

Posted by in Conservation, Reptiles

by Colin Walker, Virginia Aquarium Hepetologist   We’re in Flores Indonesia, in the western port city of Labuan Bajo. It’s not a large town, but the listing of Komodo National Park in The New7Wonders of Nature has led to an explosion of tourist activity in recent years. The main street is lined with souvenir shops, diving and tour companies, and both Western and Indonesian style restaurants, as well as several construction sites that will soon be new hotels. Motorbikes weave chaotically through traffic and the sound of horns honking is…read more

REMOTE

Posted by in Conservation, Komodos, Reptiles

Komodo is about as remote as it gets. It is a non-distinct, harsh volcanic island about 150 square miles in size. It is located in the Lesser Sundas which is a chain of islands in southeastern Indonesia that straddles the fault line separating the Asian and Australian continents. A small fishing village and some goat pasture are some of the very few signs of civilization. It possesses a diverse and ruggedly beautiful landscape. One of only seven pink sand beaches in the world is located here due to the presence…read more