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Komodo dragon exhibit and new aviary open at San Diego Zoo in June

Komodo dragon exhibit and new aviary open in June
Komodo Dragon and Hummingbird Habitat San Diego Zoo
Posted at 5:39 PM, Apr 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-28 17:34:50-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- Two new exhibits are weeks away from opening at the San Diego Zoo: one for the biggest lizard in the world and another for tiny birds.

Crews are making the final touches before the grand opening of the Komodo Kingdom and Hummingbird Habitat.

San Diego Zoo staff members said this double remodel was well overdue. Thanks to technology, both the birds and guests can enjoy their time at the new aviary.

"The wire allows fresh air to come in, but if it's really cold, we have electric blinds that go down over that wire," Birds Curator Dave Rimlinger said.

In June, 40 tropical birds will make the Hummingbird Habitat their new home. There are LED light fixtures, three recycled water ponds for bathing, green walls for nesting; everything was made with a conservationist design.

"We've used rubber mulch, our benches are going to be recycled plastic lumber, and our fence is recycled," Construction Director Eamonn Farrell said.

Just across the way will be the future home of two Komodo dragons.

Their exhibit has three areas: Beach, woodland, and mountain highlands, which resemble their natural habitat in Indonesia. The zoo's resident Komodo dragon is a 6-foot female named Ratu, who has not seen guests during the two years of construction. In the next few weeks, she'll meet her new roommate, 17-year-old Satu.

"She's going to be introduced to her future potential mate," Herpetology and Ichthyology Director Kim Gray said. "Of course, it's going to be up to them whether they like each other, but that's our breeding plan."

Zoo staff hopes to welcome baby Komodos by early next year.

The Komodo Kingdom and Hummingbird Habitat will open to the public in June. Construction continues for the Kids Zoo. That is scheduled to open by this Fall.