Another ugly one for you

Yellow-Crested Cockatoo writes about the Komodo Dragon, (c) Young World, The Hindu, 2012

The yellow-crested cockatoo writes about the Komodo Dragon. Her description, though rather harsh is true.

Selamat Pagi from Polly! Good Morning to all in my part of the world!

Hey, come on, come on, come on, guys… ask Aunt Polly who she is! I am a friendly yellow-crested cockatoo with white plumage, a black bill, yellow cheek patches and a yellow crest on the head.

I just read the letter from Kea bird. I have never seen the God of Ugly Things but it can’t be any worse than the creatures found on the island of Komodo in Indonesia.

Now, come on, come on, come on, ask Aunt Polly what her problem is, umm!

Bahasa Indonesia, I will tell you… my problem is sharing a habitat with Komodo dragons and their families! Ah ha — you want to know who or what they are, right? Ask Polly and she will tell you!

Large and heavy

Komodo dragons are supremely crude, ill-mannered and cannibalistic pre-historic creatures in the world. Mind you, in all my life on the numerous islands of Indonesia, I have yet to see another creature that bothers me more than they do. Yes, Komodo dragons are the world’s largest and heaviest monitor lizards. Come on, ask Polly how big they are! About ten feet long with a blackish, scaly body, a muscular tail, bow-shaped legs, a flat head, a yellow forked tongue; and to complete the ugly picture, a set of sharp teeth in bleeding gums.

I swear by my yellow crest, they behave worse than they look. Do they have table manners? No, no no. They just shove… ram everything on sight, dead or alive, down their throats — even their own kids.

Bahasa Indonesia, believe me, it is true!

Those poor multicoloured (in shades of green, brown, yellow and grey) hatchlings race to the nearest tree tops to save themselves from their charming parents. They remain there till they are mature, feeding on small animals, insects and birds’ eggs. But I do not pity them. When fully grown, they turn out to be just like their parents. No change, mind you, no improvement in their behaviour over millions of years. Tut, tut, unbelievable!

Cashew nuts and coconuts! Their spit is worse than their spite. Yes, trust me on this. Their saliva is a deadly cocktail of bacteria. A drop of it can kill you if the mere sight of them doesn’t.

Cockadoodledoo, the bizarre story doesn’t end here. The female can lay a fertilized egg all on her own! She is a Komodo combo of papa and mama!

Bahasa Indonesia! These KDs stun everybody. Even I am at loss for words… what advice can I offer these… whatever?

Yellow-crested sulphur cockatoo

Reply from Aristotle

Hey guys, do you know what Bahasa Indonesia means?

It is the official language spoken in Indonesia though I do not know why she keeps saying that over and over again.

Want to hear another gross thing about Komodo dragons? After swallowing their prey in a great hurry, they spit out a pellet of bone, hair and horn fragments encased in bloody mucus; and then wipe their mouths on brush. Fascinating fact, isn’t it?

Published as part of a series titled ‘Aristotle’s Mailbag’ in Young World, The Hindu, dt. October 1, 2012


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