Short shot #38: portmantoad

Today’s NYT Science Times had a piece (“This King-Sized Frog Hopped With Dinosaurs”, by Sindya N. Bhanoo) on a prehistoric giant — like, 10-pound — frog, recently reconstructed from fragments unearthed over some years on Madagascar and now on display in the lobby of Stony Brook University Medical Center.

The creature is named Beelzebufo ampinga, glossed as ‘armored devil frog’ in the article (sometimes as ‘devil toad’ — see the Wikipedia entry). The specific name ampinga means ‘shield’ in Malagasy. The generic name Beelzebufo is, yes, a portmanteau of Beelzebub and bufo (Latin ‘frog’). Which means that, taking some liberties, the creature is a portmantoad.

3 Responses to “Short shot #38: portmantoad”

  1. rhhardin Says:

    The Cane Toad is as big, I think.

    “The Cane Toad: An Unnatural History” is entertaining, an award-winning short film.

  2. arnoldzwicky Says:

    To Ron Hardin: as far as I can find out, the largest known cane toad is under 6 lbs., and certainly not the size of a beachball. Ordinary cane toads are considerably smaller than that. But still quite nasty.

  3. Dan Scherlis Says:

    From your post’s title I thought maybe you were introducing a verbed form of _portmanteau_, with spelling-variant past participle _portmantoad_

    For me your title was amphibuous.

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