Beelzebufo: Giant Frog That Ate Dinosaurs Discovered In Madagascar


Beelzebufo: Giant Frog That Ate Dinosaurs Discovered In Madagascar

Extinct giant frogs lived in Madagascar 68 million years ago.

Published today in the Nature journal Scientific Reports, the scientists from University of Adelaide, California State Polytechnic University - Pomona, University of California - Riverside and UCL, University College London found that living large South American horned frogs have similar bite forces to those of mammalian predators.

The claim stems from a study of the bite force of South American horned frogs, otherwise known as Pac-Man frogs due to their similarity in looks to the world-famous video game character of the same name.

A team of researchers has estimated that the jaws of the Beelzebufo ampinga were strong enough to allow the ancient creature to eat small dinosaurs and crocodiles.

This includes other frogs, snakes, and rodents.

Bite force sensors suggest small horned frogs, with heads measuring 2 inches wide, can chomp down with a force of 30 Newtowns, or 6.6 pounds. This is how it was described by lead author Kristopher Lappin, professor of biological sciences at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (#Cal Poly Pomona). When the frog bites down on the plates, they act as scales that can accurately sense the force of the bite. Form this it can be imagined how much biting force did the Beelzebufo had.

It's these Ceratophrys frogs that researchers studied to determine the bite force of Beelzebufo.

Jones said that the data could then be scaled up to the size of the extinct Beelzebufo frog which would result in a bite strength of 2,200 N, which is on par with some of the fiercest predators now on the planet - such as wolves and tigers. This biting force is similar to some of the predators now living on the Earth like wolves and tigers. The results were compared to the head measurements of Madagascar's Beelzebufo ampinga to determine comparative bite force.

Marc Jones, a researcher at the University of Adelaide's School of Biological Science, informed on Thursday that normally frogs with weak jaws typically consume small prey, Ceratophrys frogs can swallow animals as large as themselves.

Experts from the US and the United Kingdom found that extinct giant frog Beelzebufo ampinga could hunt small dinosaurs.

The scientists' findings showed that the extinct devil frog would have had a vise-like mouth grip even more powerful than that found in living horned frogs. In size the specimens of Beelzebufo ampinga, could reach 41 centimetre with a weight of 4.5 kilograms.

This means - assuming the estimation is correct - that the giant frog would have feasted on things far larger than small reptiles and insects, likely including young and small dinosaurs as well as crocodiles.