IUCN Red List status:
For more info on classifications visit www.iucnredlist.org
The mountain chicken is a CARNIVORE and has a huge appetite eating almost anything! Insects, crustaceans and even small vertebrates, like other frogs, snakes and small mammals can all be found on the menu
Mountain chickens can be found in Dominica and Montserrat, and like to be near streams and springs. They can be found in a variety of moist habitats
Mountain chicken frogs are named for their LARGE size and the fact that they are a local delicacy, supposedly tasting like chicken!
Mountain chicken frogs are the largest native species of frog in the Caribbean
This unusually named, very rare frog is a critically endangered species on the brink of extinction. It’s one of the world’s BIGGEST frogs, sometimes weighing in at more than a kilogram.
With powerful back legs, it can jump over a man’s head or more than two metres long. But it’s mainly crepuscular or nocturnal, resting in the day (inside burrows, under logs or camouflaged on the leaflitter) and hunting for food at dusk.
It eats insects, snails, spiders, centipedes, sometimes geckoes, smaller frogs and even snakes. Because its meat tastes like chicken, it was widely hunted as a food source on several Caribbean islands, but numbers fell drastically due to hunting, habitat loss, the introduction of invasive species of predators and the latest fungal disease called Chytridiomycosis, which wiped out whole populations in several of the islands.
Today only a small number of these frogs remain on just two islands, Dominica and Montserrat, where hunting it is now illegal.
We’re working in collaboration with other zoos to help save this critically endangered species through an international breeding programme which could lead to reintroductions in the wild.