Goliath frogs officially get the award for best (and strongest) animal parents ever.
According to research recorded in a new article in the Journal of Natural History, Goliath frogs, the world’s largest species of frog, are so strong that they can build their own ponds for their young by simply picking up rocks that weigh up to 4 pounds.
The team of researchers who recorded their findings also learned that the frogs weigh up to 7 pounds, and their bodies reach over 13 inches, excluding their legs.
Goliath frogs, an endangered species, are found in the African country of Cameroon, as well as Equatorial Guinea. Scientists also discovered their population has declined over 50 percent in the past 10 years, likely due to overhunting and deforestation.
Thanks in part to their brute strength, Goliath frogs have tended to be overprotective of their young by nurturing them in ponds away from dangerous rivers, as well as guarding them from potential predators.
“Giant frogs are the first African amphibian species now known to actively prepare or even construct breeding sites for their offspring,” said Mark-Oliver Rödel, project leader and president of conservation group Frogs & Friends, in a press release.
Researchers also noted that they first discovered the frog’s unusual talents from local frog hunters who trap the adult Goliath frogs for bush meat.
“The fact that we’ve only just discovered these behaviors shows how little we know about even some of the most spectacular creatures on our planet,” Rödel added. “We hope that our findings, combined with further ongoing research, will improve our understanding of the needs of the Goliath frog so we can help support its continued survival.”
According to the American Museum of Natural History, the Equatorial Guinean government has declared that no more than 300 Goliath frogs can be exported per yer for the pet trade, due to their classification as an endangered species.