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Riverbanks Zoo and Garden announced a new Komodo dragon habitat coming in the spring of 2024

A new Komodo dragon habitat is in the works to provide more engaging, up-close views of the endangered monitors and is part of the Phase One Bridge to the Wild project.

Komodo Dragon Riverbanks Zoo

Rendering of the new Komodo Dragon habitat. | Rendering provided by Riverbanks Zoo

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Riverbanks Zoo and Garden announced a new, larger habitat for Riverbanks’ Komodo dragons as its next step in Phase One of the Bridge to the Wild initiative.

Riverbanks’ Curator of Herpetology Sean Foley said, “Creating a larger space with a multitude of new views for guests not only is exciting for Riverbanks and our community but also benefits the animals as a whole as we work toward the goal of having a long-term sustainable population.”

The zoo’s current pair of Komodo dragons hatched in 2011 and arrived at Riverbanks — weighing only half pound each — in 2015.

Komodo Dragon Riverbanks Zoo

The view you may have when you walk up to the new habitat. | Rendering provided by Riverbanks Zoo

The habitat will feature:

  • More indoor space for additional dragons (Note: The zoo is planning to obtain another male Komono.)
  • Dedicated space for future hatchlings, claws crossed
  • Engaging, up-close views of the endangered large lizards

The new habitat is expected to open next spring and enhance Riverbanks’ ability to breed, house, and care for Komodo dragons as recommended by the SSP (Species Survival Plan).

Recapping Phase One of Bridge to the Wild

Phase One is a $32 million privately funded investment made possible through:

  • Riverbanks Zoo and Garden’s revenue
  • Partnership with the state of South Carolina
  • The Boyd Foundation
  • Riverbanks Society
  • Private donors including the Liles’ legacy gift

So far, this Phase One has brought and supported the white rhino habitat, the new Darnall W. and Susan F. Boyd Aquarium & Reptile Conservation Center, infrastructure improvements around the zoo, and an additional project announcement is slated for later this year.

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