Komodo dragons are carnivores and scavengers. They are the top carnivores in their ecosystems. Komodo dragons occasionally capture live prey by hiding in ambush and then charging their victims, although their primarily food source is carrion. They have good vision and adequate hearing but rely mostly on their acute sense of smell to detect potential prey. Komodo dragons have a long, yellow, deeply-forked tongue and sharp serrated teeth.
Komodo dragons have a rounded snout, strong limbs, and a muscular tail. They establish home ranges but they do not defend these territories. When Komodo dragons encounter one another, the dominant lizard (usually the largest male) prevails.
The mating season for Komodo dragons takes place each year during July and August. In September, females dig an egg chamber in which she lays up to 30 eggs. She covers the eggs with leaves and lies over the nest to incubate the eggs. After about 8 months they hatch and the mother provides no additional care. When born, the young are approximately 37cm in length. They are vulnerable to predation by adult Komodo dragons, birds, and mammals. For this reason the young climb up into trees where an arboreal lifestyle gives them refuge from predation until they are large enough to defend themselves.