‘Yeaay … I am going to meet the Komodo dragons for the first time!!’, that’s what I said to myself, during our ride to Rinca Island – still on our first day of Komodo LOB trip.
So why Rinca Island, not Komodo Island?
Should we not visit the Komodo Island itself to meet and greet with the komodo dragons? That’s why the name is ‘Komodo Island’, right?
Perhaps you have asked that question too, just like I did.
But, I think I have said the reason before at my first post of the series … It’s just because the possibility to meet Komodo on Rinca Island is higher than in Komodo Island. Perhaps because the size of the Komodo Island is bigger, so the Komodo dragons spread more (I think!).
The trip from Bidadari to Rinca took about 2 hours, so we had a chance to have our lunch on our way there. The lunch was of course cooked by the boat crew. Although it is simple, but it’s nice!!
Once we arrived, our captain talked to a ranger to guide us during our time on the island, as the ranger has more experience in dealing with the Komodo dragons. Remember to always be with your ranger all the time.
From the pier, we needed to walk a bit and passed a savanna and the welcome gate to the ticketing office.
The ranger said that the savanna that we passed, was usually full of water during the rainy season (which usually starts in December), and that means, the height of the water could be higher than the pathway!
Phiew … Luckily it was a bright day!
The ticket that we should pay was IDR85,000 (local) and I heard for foreigner, the ticket will be about IDR250,000. The officer will inform you about the tickets, where IDR85,000 is actually the total from A, B, C, and so on … There is also a ticket for snorkeling, so if you don’t go for snorkeling – as if you just want to do the trekking, you should inform them.
After we settled the tickets, then the ranger tell us about the routes that are available: short, medium, and long track. We chose the medium track as we wanted to go for the hill to get the panoramic view of this island.
Yeppp another hill to hike haha …!
Well … anyway, before we hiked up to the hill – which we did at the end of the track, we walked to the kitchen area which is near the ticketing office. We could see many Komodo dragons were just waited below the kitchen building, which is a tilted one. I think the Komodo dragons smelled the food here!! They just waited there, and sometimes crawled to the friend to say ‘Hi!’. Well, there is one Komodo dragon that did not move anywhere. It’s just stay there at one point, so we just used it as our photo model … Lol …
So how do we differentiate, which one is male, and which one is female?
Well just look at the size of it … if the size is smaller than it is a ‘she’, and if it’s bigger, than it is a ‘he.’
Do you know that there are at least 60 bacteria in the Komodo dragons’ saliva?! Yes, that’s many!! And among 60 bacteria, there are 2 bacteria that is dangerous. Yikes!!
The ranger also said that besides Komodo dragons, there are also other wild animals, such as deer, bull, and so on. Deer and bull became the Komodo dragons’ favourite meal.
Can you guess, how long does the Komodo dragons need to digest the deer or bull?
Well … the Komodo dragons digest the deer for about 1 day, while the bull for about 2 days!
And the interesting thing is … the Komodo dragons do not chew the victim, but they just swallow it!
We then walked outside the camp area to the nesting area.
The interesting thing that the ranger shared was the Komodo dragons use the Maleo bird’s nest to lay their eggs. From what I could see, the nest was actually below the ground – the nest looks like a mound with many holes. The depth of the holes is around 1 metre. However, not all the holes contain the eggs – as the mother needs to fool the predators (wild boar, snakes).
Usually the female Komodo dragons could have 15 – 30 eggs, but only 15% – roughly around 2 – 5 eggs, that survive and hatch. Well, 2 – 5 eggs are actually only a few compared to 15 – 30 eggs, but somehow, when the kids has reached 3 months old, the adult could eat the kids! Not good! So that’s why, the Komodo dragon kids like to flee and climb the tree for their own protection.
While we walked, I asked the ranger, why there are also Komodo dragons in Rinca Island?
He then shared the story … (I roughly remember the story, but more or less is like this):
Once upon a time, there was a big fire at the Komodo Island which made all the inhabitant – including the Komodo dragons, scared. The Komodo dragons that could also swim (wait … what?!), so they swam to save themselves. Then, there was a fisherman who saw one of the Komodo dragons, and took it to his boat and bring it to Rinca Island. From that moment, the Komodo dragon is multiplied and live happily ever after on Rinca Island.
The last spot that we visited on this Rinca Island was of course the hill!
From the contour of the hill, it looks that I could manage it! Not that steep like the one at Kelor Island, but the ground was still slippery.
And from my point of view … The view from above was dangerously beautiful! At one side you could see the river that moves between the hills to the direction of the pier at this island, on the other side, you could see line of hills, and you could also see the ranger’s camp from here too! You should not miss this one!
Don’t you love it?!
🙂 🙂 🙂
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