Komodo Island Gallery

Komodo Island Gallery
A visit to the Komodo Island is a chance to see the largest of the monitor lizards, or called Komodo Dragons. Deer are on the island, as well as interesting birds wild orchids and giant spiders. There are many beaches one with pick sand! snorkeling or scuba diving one can see numerous beautiful fish, clams, corals and turtles. A recent article in Sport Diver April 2015 Entitled “Komodo-An Underwater Amazon” highlights many of the underwater treasures. sportdiver.com
The people who live on the island are very friendly and many are tasked as guides as we walk around the island so we are in no danger from the Dragons.


Dragon toenails

Dragon walking

A Dragon walking near the entrance to the Park

Komodo dragons

Komodo dragons

Look at the long Tail

Komodo dragons

Komodo dragons smell with their tougues

Komodo dragon

Komodo dragon

A Komodo Dragon alert and looking around

Komodo Dragon Range
Fast Facts

Type:
Reptile
Diet:
Carnivore
Average life span in the wild:
30 years+
Size:
10 ft (3 m)
Weight:
330 lbs (150 kg)
Protection status:
Endangered
Did you know?
Komodo dragons can run up to 11 mph (18 kph) in short bursts.
Size relative to a 6-ft (2-m) man:

Komodo dragons have thrived in the harsh climate of Indonesia’s Lesser Sunda Islands for millions of years, although amazingly, their existence was unknown to humans until about 100 years ago.

Reaching 10 feet (3 meters) in length and more than 300 pounds (136 kilograms), Komodo dragons are the heaviest lizards on Earth. They have long, flat heads with rounded snouts, scaly skin, bowed legs, and huge, muscular tails.

As the dominant predators on the handful of islands they inhabit, they will eat almost anything, including carrion, deer, pigs, smaller dragons, and even large water buffalo and humans. When hunting, Komodo dragons rely on camouflage and patience, lying in wait for passing prey. When a victim ambles by, the dragon springs, using its powerful legs, sharp claws and serrated, shark-like teeth to eviscerate its prey.

Animals that escape the jaws of a Komodo will only feel lucky briefly. Dragon saliva teems with over 50 strains of bacteria, and within 24 hours, the stricken creature usually dies of blood poisoning. Dragons calmly follow an escapee for miles as the bacteria takes effect, using their keen sense of smell to hone in on the corpse. A dragon can eat a whopping 80 percent of its body weight in a single feeding.

There is a stable population of about 3,000 to 5,000 Komodo dragons on the islands of Komodo, Gila Motang, Rinca, and Flores. However, a dearth of egg-laying females, poaching, human encroachment, and natural disasters has driven the species to endangered status.

http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/reptiles/komodo-dragon/

Dubai and the Burj Khalifa

Dubai and the Burj Khalifa

What a city!
A lot could be said about Dubai, but it probably has all been said before. I want to focus on some of the buildings that one can see in Dubai. The first one of course will be the Tallest building in the World–the Burj Khalifa. It is an amazing building to view and to go into. The high-speed elevator will zip one to the 124th floor in less than one minute.

I feature a few pictures of the Bruj Khalifa with different views, day and night, and from the ground and from the 124th floor.

For an amazing picture from the 124th floor look at-Joe McNally’s Instagram photo http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/20/joe-mcnally-burj-khalifa-skyscraper-photo-picture_n_2917817.html–The picture I wish I had taken when I was there!

Burj Facts
1. Burj Khalifa is located in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE).

2. It’s 828 metres tall (2,717 feet).

3. The exact height was not revealed until final stages of the construction.

4. It was officially opened on Jan 4, 2010.

5. It was previously known as Burj Dubai.

6. Burj means Tower in Arabic language.

7. It’s renamed after Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of UAE and ruler of Abu Dhabi.

World records

8. Tallest building – previously Taiwan’s Taipei 101 (509m).

9. Tallest free-standing structure – previously Canada’s CN Tower (555m).

10. Tallest man-made structure – previously USA’s KVLY-TV Mast (629m).

11. Tallest man-made structure ever – previously Poland’s Warsaw Radio Mast (647m).

12. Building with most floors (160) – previously USA’s World Trade Center (110).

13. Highest elevator installation.

14. Highest outdoor observation deck (~440m)

15. Highest mosque at 158th floor.

16. Highest (insert here) which requires another long list to be completed ;p

17. Fastest elevators at speed of 64km/h, or 18m/s.

18. It would take just a minute to reach from ground level to top floor.

Architecture facts

19. Burj Dubai has more than 162 floors.

20. It has 49 office floors.

21. It houses 1044 residential apartments.

22. It has a floor area of 334,000 square metres.

23. There’s 57 lifts in the tower.

24. There’s 28,261 of glass-panels on the exterior of the tower.

25. Its top spire can be seen from 95km afar.

26. The architecture features a triple-lobed footprint, an abstraction of the Hymenocallis flower.

27. The Y-shaped floor plan aims to maximize views of the Gulf.

28. Over 1,000 pieces of art from prominent Middle Eastern and international artists will adorn the tower and the surrounding Emaar Boulevard.

Environmental facts

29. The tower’s peak electricity demand is estimated at 50MVA, equivalent to roughly 500,000 100-watt light bulbs.

30. It’s expected to use an average of 946,000 litres of water each day.

31. During peak cooling conditions, the tower will require around 12,500 tons of cooling, equivalent to the cooling capacity of about 10,000 tons of melting ice.

Construction facts

32. Construction began in September 2004.

33. The tower’s architect and engineer is Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (Chicago).

34. The main constructor is Emaar Properties, a joint venture by Korea’s Samsung C&T, Belgium’s Besix and UAE’s Arabtec.

35. The construction project manager is Turner Construction Company.

36. Bill Baker is the chief structural engineer.

37. Adrian Smith is consulting design partner.

38. It took some 22 million man-hours to be completed.

39. On downside, foreign construction workers were pay as little as $4 per day.

40. Over 45,000 cubic-metres of concrete, weighing more than 110,000 tonnes, were used.

41. Concrete used was enough to lay a 2,065km-long pavement; and equivalent to the weight of 100,000 elephants.

42. Total weight of aluminium used is equivalent to that of five A380 aircraft.

43. Total length of stainless steel bull nose fins used is equal to 293 times the height of France’s Eiffel Tower.

44. The foundations were dug to depths of 50m.

Financial figures

45. Total cost estimated at US$1.5 billion.

46. The price for the offices spaces reached as high as US$4,000 per sq ft.

47. Residential spaces as high as US$3,500 per sq ft.

48. The building is part of the a 490-acre flagship development called Downtown Burj Khalifa.

Random stuff

49. Burj Khalifa is about twice the height of Empire State Building (443m).

50. It’s taller than Hong Kong’s Victoria Peak (552m).

51. It’s the first world’s tallest structure in history to include residential space.

52. It will feature the world’s first Armani Hotel, which occupies 15 of the lower 39 floors.

53. The exterior temperature at the top of will be 6°C cooler than its base (some say 10°C).

54. Jan 4, its opening date, was the birthday of Sir Isaac Newton.

55. Around 12,000 people are expected to live and work in the tower when it’s fully occupied.

56. The tower’s official website is www.burjkhalifa.ae.