The Goliath frog is a three foot long amphibian the size of a house cat — often weighing as much as seven pounds.
This rare species (Conraua goliath) has a very limited habitat range within portions of Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea. This small range makes its vulnerable to habitat loss, especially due to logging and land clearing for agricultural purposes.
These massive amphibians are greenish brown in color which assists with camouflage against the moss covered rocks of their natural habitat. Other than flaunting intimidating size, hiding in the sandy bottoms of rivers is their primary form of protection from predators.
Goliath frogs require proximity to water similar to other frog species, preferring swift-moving rivers and waterfalls. They tend to persist in humid areas that maintain high year-round temperatures.
This close proximity to water is vital for reproductive purposes. Goliath frogs have unusual reproductive tendencies, exemplified by their lack of vocal sacs which are typically present in frog and toad species.
Instead of producing mating calls, male members of the species build spawning nests out of semicircular rock patterns and wrestle with other males to breed with females. Females lay thousands of eggs within these protected areas and then leave the young to fend for themselves.
One distinct possibility for their limited habitat range is that Goliath tadpoles feed on a single aquatic plant, Dicraeia warmingii. This plant only grows in areas with fast moving water, explaining the frog’s tendencies to build spawning areas near waterfalls.
Adult Goliath frogs have voracious appetites primarily consisting of crabs but also including baby turtles, snakes, and frogs.
Although their size is intimidating, Goliath frogs are generally docile creatures that pose no threat to humans.