ASIAN WATER MONITOR

Varanus Salvator

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ASIAN WATER MONITOR

Varanus Salvator

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Kingdom

Animalia

Phylum

Chordata

Subphylum

Vertebrata

Class

Reptilia

Order

Squamata

Family

Varanidae

Genus

Varanus

Species

Varanus Salvator

Description

A very large lizard with strong claws and a long tail that is deeper than it is wide. Colour above drab grey, brown, or black, with or without bands of whitish, yellow, or red-brown spots or rings, often merging on the tail to become bands. Markings are often less distinct on large animals. Undersurface usually yellowish, sometimes white or pale grey, with or without darker bars which extend from the lower sides onto the throat and sides of the belly. Barring on the lips and a dark streak along the temple often present. Juveniles are black with bright yellow markings. Snout-vent length approximately 600 mm, total length approximately 1.5 m. Recorded attaining a maximum of 1.04 m snout-vent length, 3.21 m total length.

Bali Wildlife

Population Size

Life Span

Unknown

11 -25 yrs

Weight

Lenght

19.5-50 Kg

1.5-2 M

Nature

Di

Diurnal

Di

Diurnal

Ca

Carnivore

Ca

Carnivore

Sc

Scavenger

Sc

Scavenger

Se

Semiaquatic

Se

Semiaquatic

Pr

Precocial

Pr

Precocial

Bu

Burrowing

Bu

Burrowing

So

Solitary

So

Solitary

Gallery

Photo Gallery

Video Gallery

Play Video
Play Video

Distribution

Asian water monitors are widely distributed from India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, the Chinese Guangxi and Hainan provinces, Malaysia, Singapore to the Sunda islands Sumatra, Java, Bali, Borneo, and Sulawesi. They inhabit a variety of natural habitats though predominantly these lizards reside in primary forests and mangrove swamps. They may also thrive in agricultural areas as well as cities with canal systems. Habitats that are considered to be most important to this species are mangrove vegetation, swamps, and wetlands.

Geography

Continent

Asia

Subcontinents

South Asia, South East Asia

Countries

Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam

Bali Wildlife

Biome

On Bali inhabits lowland rainforest, monsoon forest, savannah, mangroves and agricultural land up to approximately 100 m asl. Elsewhere known from a wide variety of habitats including towns and lower montane forest, up to 1200 m asl. Commonest near water, but on Bali also found in dry areas.

Tropical Moist Forest

Mangrove

Wetlands

Climate Zones

Habits and Lifestyle

Asian water monitors are widely distributed from India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, the Chinese Guangxi and Hainan provinces, Malaysia, Singapore to the Sunda islands Sumatra, Java, Bali, Borneo, and Sulawesi. They inhabit a variety of natural habitats though predominantly these lizards reside in primary forests and mangrove swamps. They may also thrive in agricultural areas as well as cities with canal systems. Habitats that are considered to be most important to this species are mangrove vegetation, swamps, and wetlands.

Group Name

lounge

Lifestyle

Semiaquatic, Precocial, Burrowing

Diet and Nutrition

Asian water monitors are carnivores, and consume a wide range of prey. They eat fish, frogs, rodents, birds, crabs, and snakes. They have also been known to eat turtles, as well as young crocodiles and crocodile eggs. Water monitors will also often eat carrion. They have a keen sense of smell and can smell a carcass from far away.

Diet

Carnivore, Scavenger

Mating Habits

Reproduction Season

April-October

Incubation Period

6-7 months

Independent Age

At Birth

Baby Name

Hatchling

Baby Carrying

60 Eggs

Bali Wildlife

Asian water monitors breed from April and until October. Females lay their eggs a month after mating usually in rotting logs or tree stumps. A clutch usually contains about 10-40 eggs which are incubated during 6-7 months. The young are fully-developed and independent at birth. Males become reproductively mature when they are about 1 m in size and females are reproductively matured at about 50 cm.

LC

Least Concern

LC

Least Consern

Population threats

The Asian water monitor is one of the most exploited varanids; its skin is used for fashion accessories such as shoes, belts, and handbags which are shipped globally. Other uses include a perceived remedy for skin ailments, novelty food in Indonesia, as a perceived aphrodisiac, and as pets. Loss of habitat and hunting has exterminated water monitors from most of mainland India. In other areas, they survive despite being hunted.

Population number

According to IUCN, the Asian water monitor is locally common and widespread throughout its range but no overall population estimate is available. Currently, this species is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List.

Ecological niche

Asian water monitors play a very important role in their ecosystem as they are one of the only large land carnivores. They can also be helpful as they hunt crabs that could destroy the banks of rice fields, and also eat venomous snakes.

Additional Information

Not available

References

1. Asian Water Monitor on Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asian_water_monitor

2. Asian Water Monitor on The IUCN Red List site – https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/178214/7499172

Related Species

Komodo Dragon

Varanus Komodoensis

Monitor

Another Related Species

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