16 Largest Amphibians in the World

Largest Amphibians in the World
Photo by David Clode

The thought of the Largest amphibians in the world may sound bizarre since the size of most amphibians, including frogs, salamanders, and others, is not considered particularly impressive.

Although there are a significant number of amphibians species, the majority are hardly longer than a few inches in length.

On the other hand, there are a few of them that are genuinely fairly large. That is why we will take the time to show you 16 of the largest amphibians in the world.

You will not only understand how huge an amphibian may get, but you will also understand why it is essential to take steps to conserve these animals.

1. Cane Toad

Toads generally have long, muscular back legs, bowlegged, bulldog-like front legs, and huge jaws; cane toads also have these characteristics.

They have rough, warty skin that is yellowish-brown on the back and dirty tan on the belly. Their backs are darker than their bellies.

Cane toads have big eyes with pupils slitted horizontally across their eyeballs.

Additionally, they have bone ridges over their eyes that merge in a ridge directly above the bridge of their nose. Large poison glands are in the space behind the eyes.

Cane toads were first discovered in the Amazon Basin in South America and have since spread to other parts of South and Central America.

There, they inhabit a variety of ecosystems, including semiarid deserts and tropical rainforests. Although they often reside close to bodies of water, these toads are not as aquatic as some other species of amphibians.

Cane toads begin their lives as eggs floating around in the water. Females can have offspring at any time of the year and can deposit anywhere from 8,000 to 30,000 eggs at once.

The eggs hatch into tadpoles that do not have legs. As soon as they have reached a length of about an inch and a half, they can start producing additional toadlets.

Cane toads can live anywhere from five to ten years in the wild when left to their own.

The length of an adult cane toad ranges from four to six inches, measured from the tip of its snout to the tip of its tail; this measurement does not include the length of the animal’s legs when stretched out.

Females are typically larger than their male counterparts, with some reaching a length of nine inches or more.

2. Giant River Frog

The second creature on our list of largest amphibians in the world is The giant river frog, which you can find in Borneo, Indonesia, and Malaysia and can reach a length of 17 centimeters from its snout to its vent (6.7 inches).

They have a look that is primarily light brown, and you can find them along the rivers of streams in the rainforest, where they can readily blend in with their environment because of this.

There is still a substantial population of giant river frogs, and their conservation status is classified as “Least Concern,” even though people frequently hunt them for food on a local scale.

Deforestation has an impact on the habitat in which they live.

3. Smoky Jungle Frog

They have a large head with an oval snout and a tan body with red-brown stripes. Male smoky jungle frogs are slightly smaller than females and grow to a length of approximately 19 centimeters, while females are slightly longer.

These frogs make their homes in the tropical and subtropical woods and marshes of Bolivia, Brazil, Ecuador, Colombia, and Peru. You can find them in all five of those countries.

They consume a diverse array of foods, such as spiders, lizards, snakes, bats, birds, and other species of frogs.

The capacity of the smokey jungle frog to avoid being captured and its defense mechanism are fascinating aspects of this species.

They can jump great distances very quickly, and if caught, they have a high-pitched scream that they let out, which typically causes the predator to let them go.

Also, their skin contains a potent poison known as Leptodactylidae, which they can secrete in self-defense if they come under attack.

Even someone standing nearby would eventually start sneezing and wind up with a runny nose, puffy eyes, and itchy eyes.

As a result, the conservation status of these animals is of Least Concern, which should not come as a surprise.

4. Surinam Horned Frog

It is possible for the Surinam horned frog, also known as the Amazonian horned frog, to attain a length of approximately 20 centimeters (7.9 inches) and a weight of approximately 0.5 kilograms (1.1 lbs), making them one of the largest amphibians in the world.

It is easy to recognize this creature due to its extraordinarily large mouth and the “horns” that sit above its eyes.

The Surinam horned frog, which you can find in many countries, including Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Suriname, Peru, and Venezuela, has green and brown coloring to help it blend in with its environment.

This is especially helpful given that it spends hours sitting still and waiting for the right moment to pounce on its prey. It shouldn’t be surprising that they consume almost anything, including lizards, birds, small mammals, and other frogs; in fact, they frequently swallow their prey whole.

Considering the size of their mouths, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. The existence of these toads is not in any form of danger, and consequently, the conservative status of these species is of “least concern.”

5. American Bullfrog

In addition to their widespread distribution across the United States, These animals are among the largest amphibians in the world.

American bullfrogs have been successfully introduced into many countries across Europe and Asia. Females are slightly larger than males and can grow to a length of 20 centimeters (7.9 inches) and weigh just over 0.5 kilograms (1.1 pounds) (1.1 lbs).

Because it consumes fish, snakes, small turtles, birds, and other small mammals, it is an invasive species in many countries.

This is because they threaten the continued existence of some of the species it consumes. They are typically brown or olive green in color and favor living in wet environments such as swamps, ponds, and lakes.

6. Mountain Chicken

The mountain chicken frog, closely related to the smoky mountain frog, can be found primarily in Dominica and Montserrat.

They mature to a length of approximately 20 centimeters (7.9 inches) and can weigh up to one kilogram (2.2 lbs).

They have yellow undersides, and their bodies are typically a shade of brown with spots or stripes on them.

These markings serve as camouflage for them when found along the banks of streams, which is where they commonly inhabit.

People and other animals often hunt the mountain chicken frog for food; combined with a fungal disease that has swept through the population, it has resulted in them being officially critically endangered, as there are less than 100 left in the wild.

7. Hellbender

The scientific name of the hellbender is Cryptobranchus alleganiensis. The length of this aquatic salamander can range anywhere from 12 to 30 inches, making it one of the largest amphibians in the world.

The hellbender is significantly smaller than the greater siren. On the other hand, because their bodies are so much more robust, they typically weigh more.

The home range of the hellbender extends over the eastern United States, from New York to the southern state of Mississippi and west to the state of Missouri.

On the other hand, they do not inhabit coastal plains and can only thrive in the northern parts of most southern states, such as South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama.

Because they hide under large rocks and other shelters in swiftly moving water, particularly streams, hellbenders are notoriously difficult to track down.

8. Greater Siren

The greater siren, also known as Siren lacertina, takes the top spot on the list of the largest amphibians in the world.

This amphibian can reach lengths of up to 1 meter! The appearance of the greater siren is similar to that of an eel; their bodies can be green or grayish in color, and they have yellow or green dots on their bodies.

They have two decreased forelimbs, each of which has four toes and an elongated tail, giving them the appearance of an eel.

Inhabitants of the larger siren reside along the coasts of the southeastern United States. They make their homes in still bodies of water surrounded by a lot of vegetation and can survive in various wetland environments.

They can enter a state of dormancy known as aestivation, which allows them to continue living for years at a time, even when the weather is hot and dry.

Not only are they substantial amphibians, but they also have a lot of fascinating characteristics!

9. Japanese Giant Salamander

The Japanese giant salamander can reach lengths of over 5 feet, making it significantly longer than both the greater siren and the hellbender.

Even if their length does not impress you, you have to consider that they can weigh more than 50 pounds. All these outstanding characteristics put them on a high rank among the largest amphibians in the world.

This species of salamander, like the hellbender, prefers to make its home at the bottom of swiftly moving streams. Because of the mottled black and brown pattern on their bodies, it isn’t easy to spot them.

Even so, the IUCN has determined that they are a species in a state of near-threatened status because they have been over-collected and the continued pollution of their natural habitats.

At the moment, you can only come across them in the southwestern regions of Japan.

10. Chinese Giant Salamander

The Chinese giant salamander has the potential to reach a length of 5.9 feet, making it one of the longest amphibians found anywhere in the world.

China’s central and eastern regions are home to the Andrias davidianus plant. Even though specimens of the species come in various colors, it is most commonly depicted with wrinkly skin and brown coloration. They are highly endangered and rarely seen in the wild.

They can grow as long as 5.9 feet and as heavy as 130 pounds, but on average, they are approximately 3.8 feet long and weigh more than 66 pounds.

The largest of them can be even longer than that. Many people consider this species to be at the top rank of largest amphibians in the world.

11. South China Giant Salamander

With an average length of 5.9 feet and the potential to grow considerably longer, the South China giant salamander holds the world’s title of the largest amphibian.

This species was, in a sense, unearthed again not too long ago. Scientists previously grouped them with the Chinese giant salamander, but their scientific name, Andrias sligoi, has since been established.

Nevertheless, research carried out in 2018 and a publication released in 2019 offered light on how the scientific community views the subject.

These two species cannot be confused with one another. However, at this time, it is uncertain whether any members of this species still live in the wild anywhere in the world today.

The only ones still alive may be held captive. The International Union for Conservation of Nature classifies them as “critically endangered.

In the past, you may find them in southern China, most notably in the basin of the Pearl River. It was 5.9 feet long when scientists measured the largest specimen, which indicates that it is at least as long as the Chinese giant salamander.

To put it another way, these salamanders may be the largest amphibians in the world, but we don’t know for sure.

12. African Bullfrog

Pyxicephalus adspersus, or the African bullfrog, also known as the pixie frog, may reach an astonishing length of 25 centimeters in adulthood (9.8 inches).

They have a neck that is either yellow or orange and typically reside in the deserts or floodplains of Africa. Their coloration is similar to that of olive green.

Even though they favor living near water bodies, African bullfrogs can easily survive in environments completely devoid of water.

When conditions on the surface become too hot and dry for them, they simply burrow a hole in the earth. They are very skillful predators and would typically lie in wait for their target before springing into action and consuming them in their whole.

13. Blyth’s River Frog

The Blyth’s river frog, commonly known as the Giant Asian river frog, is the largest species of frog found in Asia. Females of this species can grow up to 26 centimeters (10.2 inches) long and weigh up to approximately 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds).

These huge frogs, which are often brown, yellow, or grey, can be found in the forest regions of Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore.

They inhabit areas along rocky streams and are a common source of food for those who live there.

But because of hunting and the consequences of logging and deforestation, which are destroying their habitat, the Blyth’s river frog’s conservative status is now comparable to that of being Near Threatened.

14. Lake Junin Frog

These enormous frogs, which may grow up to 30 centimeters (11.8 inches) long, commonly reside in Lake Junin in Peru, as their name suggests; nevertheless, they also inhabit other lakes in the vicinity and areas of the Mantaro River.

The Lake Junin frogs, which may grow as large as 2 kilograms (4.4 pounds) in weight, rarely leave the water because they find it more convenient to live, eat, and reproduce there.

Because of their dark brown coloring and perfectly smooth skin, People sometimes referred to them as the Andes smooth frog in addition to their other names.

Unfortunately, these aquatic frogs are in grave danger due to hunting and the contamination of the lakes they inhabit.

15. Chilean Giant Frog

The Chilean giant frog, also known as the helmeted water toad, belongs to the family of Calyptocephalellidae. Despite this alternative name, the Chilean giant frog is not a toad.

Females are significantly larger than males and can reach a length of 32 centimeters (12.6 inches) from their snout to their vents while weighing 3 kilograms (6.6 lbs).

In comparison, males only reach a maximum size of about 15 centimeters, but even tadpoles can reach lengths of about 10 centimeters.

They originate in Chile, as their name implies, and reside in the lowlands, namely in water bodies that are quite deep. They can be yellow, green, or brown in color, and their heads are big and round.

Their bodies can also be a variety of colors. Although hunting them is illegal, there is still a thriving illicit market for them, and their numbers have plummeted so drastically that their conservation status is now Vulnerable.

Because of their large size, People frequently hunt them for food or explicitly farm them for their meat.

16. Goliath Frog

The Goliath frog, which has an incredible snout-to-vent length of 32 centimeters (12.6 inches) and weighs an astonishing 3.3 kilograms (7.3 pounds), takes the top rank on our list.

Because of this, the Goliath frog holds the title of the world’s largest frog.

Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea are home to this species’ streams and rainforest habitats.

Because of their size, the males can readily move boulders to form enormous nests up to three feet wide so that the female can place her eggs in them.

They consume a wide variety of fish, snakes, birds, small animals, and other amphibians like newts and salamanders, and their hue is typically either yellow-green or yellow-orange.

However, the tadpoles will only consume podostemaceae (a family of plants).

Because of the long history of hunting these giants for food and capturing them for the sake of the pet trade and deforestation, posing a significant risk to their natural habitat, the species is now legally endangered.

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