Komodo dragon population monitoring program at Torong Padang, North Flores
On December 2018, we successfully conducted our baseline study at the Torong Padang Peninsula, which served as an additional site for monitoring the population of Komodo dragons and their prey in Northern Flores. After installing camera traps in 22 locations throughout the Torong Padang peninsula, our results confirmed the presence of Komodo dragons in 14 separate trap locations with an estimation of 23 ± 6 individuals (95% CI = 13 – 40) represented a mixture of adult, sub-adult and juvenile animals. This baseline study confirmed that Torong Padang has become an important ecological corridor for the Komodo dragon population, connecting Ontoloe island and Pota. Moreover, these results also indicate that Torong Padang requires more attention as a potential habitat for Komodo dragons, due to its location outside the current borders of the reserve. Following monitoring program, we conducted community awareness programs in three villages in Riung. Video documentary and result of the monitoring program was disseminated to community through film screening and discussion.