Komodo Dragons are rare and endangered monitor lizards that are native to Indonesia. There are only a handful of zoos in Florida that even have Komodo Dragons, which makes the experience of seeing one in person quite special.
The following is a list of zoos in Florida that have Komodo Dragons:
Brevard Zoo in Florida
Address: 8225 N Wickham Rd, Melbourne, FL
Established in 1994, the Brevard Zoo is a 75-acre zoo in Melbourne that features over 900 animals from Florida, South America, Asia, Africa and Australia.
The zoo is home to a male Komodo Dragon named Sheldon. Sheldon was born sometime around 2008 and was acquired by the Brevard Zoo from the St. Augustine Alligator Farm in 2018.
The zoo is also home to other types of monitor lizards, such as Black-Throated monitor lizards and Savanah Monitor Lizards.
Sheldon and the other monitor lizards live in the Lands of Change: Australia and Beyond exhibit which they share with kangaroos, warty pigs, cassowaries, wrinkled hornbills, emus and more.
In addition to seeing a Komodo Dragon, for an extra fee visitors to the zoo can also feed a giraffe, feed Lorikeets and pet a rhino.
In 2022, Brevard Zoo was voted the #4 Best Zoo in North America in the USA Today 10 Best Readers’ Choice Awards.
Brevard Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
The East Coast Zoological Society is the owner of the Brevard Zoo.
Address: 370 Zoo Parkway, Jacksonville, Florida
Established in 1914, the Jacksonville Zoo is a 122-acre zoo in Jacksonville that features over 2000 animals.
The Jacksonville Zoo is also home to Komodo Dragons, which includes a male Komodo Dragon named Kawan who lives in the zoo’s Asian Bamboo Garden and Komodo Dragon exhibit.
Kawan was born in 2003 which puts him at about halfway to his life expectancy and he is described by his caretakers as “pretty laid back” but he suffers from arthritis in his legs due to his advanced age and large size.
The Komodo Dragon exhibit that Kawan lives in is designed to appear as if the dragons are wandering a rural Indonesian fishing village on the island of Komodo.
For an extra fee, visitors to the zoo can also feed a giraffe at the Giraffe Overlook, feed a stingray at the Stingray Bay exhibit or feed exotic birds in the aviary.
In 2022, the Jacksonville Zoo was nominated for USA Today’s 10 Best Zoo Exhibit.
The Jacksonville Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Dr. Jeff Ettling is the President and CEO of the Jacksonville Zoo.
St. Augustine Alligator Farm in Florida:
Address: 999 Anastasia Blvd, St. Augustine, FL
The zoo is also home to a female Komodo Dragon named Lya, who lives in the zoo’s Komodo Dragon exhibit, and a number of other types of monitor lizards such as Lace monitors, Mertens’ water monitors and Savannah monitors.
If you want to visit the St. Augustine Alligator Farm to see a Komodo Dragon in person and want to save money on tickets, check out this article on St. Augustine Alligator Farm discount tickets.
The St. Augustine Alligator Farm is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
John Brueggen is the director and general manager of the St. Augustine Alligator Farm.
Address: 12400 SW 152nd St, Miami, FL
Established in 1948, Zoo Miami is a 750-acre tropical zoo in Miami that features over 3,000 animals, which includes Komodo Dragons.
In 2020, one of the zoo’s Komodo Dragons, Estrella, had emergency surgery after she swallowed a water bottle that a visitor had dropped into the enclosure.
For an extra fee, visitors to the zoo can also feed a giraffe, rhino, camel or parrot or pet a giant tortoise.
If you want to visit the zoo and would like to save money on tickets, check out this article on Zoo Miami discount tickets.
Zoo Miami is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Bill Moore is the President and CEO of the Zoo Miami Foundation.
Zoo Tampa at Lowry Park:
Address: 1101 W Sligh Ave, Tampa, FL
Established in 1957, Zoo Tampa is a 63-acre zoo that features more than 1,300 animals.
The zoo is also home to two Komodo Dragons named Aanjay and Titus.
The Komodo Dragons live in the zoo’s Asian Gardens exhibit which it shares with warty pigs, sun bears, Indian Rhinoceros, Malayan tigers and Malayan tapir.
Zoo Tampa is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Joseph A. Couceiro is the President and CEO of Zoo Tampa.
“World Lizard Day.” Zoo Tampa, zootampa.org/world-lizard-day/
Rice, Nicholas. “Florida Komodo Dragon Undergoes Surgery After Eating Water Bottle Dropped in Zoo Enclosure.” People Magazine, 9 July. 2020, people.com/pets/florida-zoo-komodo-dragon-surgery-after-eating-bottle/
Crumpler, David. “Jacksonville Zoo takes extra steps to help animals with special needs thrive.” The Florida-Times Union, 7 May. 2017, jacksonville.com/story/news/2017/05/07/jacksonville-zoo-takes-extra-steps-help-animals-special-needs-thrive/15754097007/
Figueroa, Adrian. “Komodo Survival Program.” Zoo Miami, zoomiami.org/komodo-survival-program
“Komodo Dragon.” Jacksonville Zoo, jacksonvillezoo.org/komodo-dragon
Rodriguez, Mekena. “The Buzz: Jacksonville Zoo nominated for USA Today 10 Best Zoo Exhibit.” First Coast News, 17 May. 2022, firstcoastnews.com/article/features/trending-today/the-buzz-jacksonville-zoo-nominated-for-usa-today-10-best-zoo-exhibit/77-fe768756-c057-4aa9-81b2-f1c33cfe667e
Sangalang, Jennifer. “Kute! Kangaroos, Komodo Dragons, are new at Brevard Zoo.” Florida Today, 22, May. 2017, floridatoday.com/story/entertainment/2017/05/22/kangaroos-komodo-dragons-brevard-zoo/101702838/
“Visit.” Brevard Zoo, brevardzoo.org/visit/
“New Australia & Beyond Exhibit.” Brevard Zoo, brevardzoo.org/lands-of-change/
“Come Meet Sheldon in Lands of Change!” Brevard Zoo, 22 Oct. 2018, brevardzoo.org/come-meet-sheldon-in-lands-of-change/
“Sheldon’s Check Up.” Brevard Zoo, 31 May. 2018, brevardzoo.org/sheldons-checkup/
“Komodo Dragon.” Brevard Zoo, brevardzoo.org/animals/lands-of-change/komodo-dragon/
Sherrod, Brian. “Cheyenne Mountain Zoo Voted #3 Best Zoo in North America.” KKTV, 3 June. 2022, kktv.com/2022/06/03/cheyenne-mountain-zoo-voted-3-best-zoo-north-america/
“Currently Accredited Zoos and Aquariums.” Association of Zoos and Aqariums, aza.org/current-accreditation-list