Mandela's pet dragon dies at Pretoria Zoo

Cape Town- South Africa (PANA) -- The second rare Komodo dragon presented to South Africa's former President Nelson Mandela by the Indonesian government has died at Pretoria Zoo, in the country's capital.
According to zoo director Willie Labuschagne, the dragon's death was a mystery as it appeared to be in good health and was kept in a state-of-the-art enclosure.
Two years ago the dragon's mate died from a bacterial infection of the ovaries.
Labuschagne said that negotiations were under way with Indonesia to acquire new Komodo dragons, the world's largest lizards.
They can grow up to three metres long.
Less than 4,000 of these protected animals remain in the wild, he said.

14 january 2003 10:04:00

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