For generations, residents of San Roque have told stories of giant frogs that inhabit the two lagoons that flank their tiny Cajas mountain village. Although visiting scientists, lured by the stories, have found frogs in the area that measured an impressive 20 inches in length, villagers told them that there were larger frogs that came out of the water only at night.
Two weeks ago, San Roque farmer Carlos Cárdenas provided proof of the large frogs when he shot and killed one that he said ate his pet shitzszu, José. “My wife saw it happen when she went outside to call him,” Cárdenas said. “José was by the lagoon and just when she called the frog came out of the water and grabbed him. It was horrible and she still hasn’t gotten over it.”
Following the incident, Cárdenas said he sat by the lagoon all night, and shot the frog when it crawled ashore just before daybreak. He was certain, he said, that it was the frog that ate José.
A neighbor of Cárdenas called the science faculty at the University of Cuenca the next morning and students drove to San Roque, 15 kilometers off the Cuenca-to-Guayaquil highway, and picked up the body.