- Australian Rangers discovered a potentially record-breaking giant cane toad last week.
- Nicknamed “Toadzilla”, she weighed 5.95 pounds, six times more than the average for her species.
- Cane toads were introduced to Australia in 1935 and are listed as pests by authorities.
Park rangers in Australia have discovered possibly the largest cane toad on record and nicknamed it “Toadzilla” in honor of its size.
Ranger Kylee Gray was clearing a path in Conway National Park last week when she had to get out of her vehicle due to a snake blocking her path, according to the Queensland Department of Environment and Science.
It was then that Gray looked down and saw Toadzilla.
“I reached down and grabbed the cane toad and couldn’t believe how big and heavy it was,” Gray said, according to the department.
The monstrous cane toad weighed 5.95 pounds, six times more than the average cane toad.
“We think it’s a female because of its size, and female toads get bigger than males,” Gray said.
Gray and her team put Toadzilla in a container and removed her from the wild, she said.
“A cane toad this size will eat anything it can put in its mouth, including insects, reptiles and small mammals,” she added.
Cane toads come from South and Central America, but 2,400 of them were introduced to Australia in 1935 to control beetles destroying sugarcane crops in Queensland. The cane toad population has since exploded to around 200 million in Australia, and they are considered pests by the Australian government.
These toads are venomous, exuding venom from glands on their shoulders when provoked, while cane toads have increased in numbers in the Australian wild, the number of predators in some national parks has begun to decline.
Some of them are known to reach almost Toadzilla’s size, but specimens of its weight are rare, according to the Department of Environment and Science.
“I don’t know how old she is, but cane toads can live up to 15 years in the wild,” Gray said. “So this one has been around for a long time. We’re glad to have it removed from the national park.”
However, Toadzilla will not grow. Because her species is officially designated as a pest, Toadzilla was euthanized, the Department of Environment and Science told Insider on Friday.
She also has not been officially weighed independently, a department spokesperson said.
“We didn’t get it on certified scales,” Gray told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. “So we’re kicking each other.”
In the meantime, Toadzilla can be donated to the Queensland Museum, which has expressed interest in taking the toad, according to the department.
The largest known toad was a pet male in Sweden named Prinsen, or The Prince, weighing 5.84 pounds in 1991, according to Guinness World Records.