Monster from the deep: Extremely rare giant salamander measuring a whopping 4ft 7in discovered in remote cave in China
Beast: The rare Chinese giant salamander was picked up from inside a cave in Chongqing, south-west China
- Other-worldly amphibian, which weighs 114 lbs, is rare to find these days
- Majority of population in China has been hunted for food and medicine
- Crab-eating beast is 200 years old and said to be 'critically endangered'
- Scientists have found that ancient creatures co-existed with dinosaurs
An enormous and incredibly rare salamander, estimated by experts to be over 200-years-old, has been found in an isolated karst cave in south-west China
Impressive creature: The endangered creature weighs in at 104 lbs and is thought to be over 200 years old
The 4ft 7in amphibious beast, weighing in at about 114 lbs, was stumbled upon going about its business recently in a cave in Chongqing according to People's Daily Online.
An eye-popping video released to Chinese media shows the rubbery brown monster then being examined by wildlife experts having transferred it to a local research facility for further study.
Weighty: The 4ft 7in brown monster was then examined by wildlife experts having transferred it to a local pool
Giant salamanders, adjudged to be 'critically endangered' by the Zoological Society of London, are the largest species of amphibian in the world, growing up to 6ft in length.
Observing: An attendant expert takes a look at the captive salamander. They are in real danger from poachers
Having been around for over 170 million years, they are also one of the oldest species on the planet, having co-existed with several species of dinosaurs but have suffered from a huge dip in population over the past thirty years with human consumption the major cause of this decline.
The Chinese giant salamander is considered to be a luxury food item in the country as well as an important source of traditional medicines, in spite of its rarity.
As they are slow and easy to hunt, catching the salamanders in nets is not a problem for Chinese poachers and they have been killed in droves - although they are now a protected species in China
Unbelievable: The massive beast, which is coveted in China for its anti-ageing properties, is measured
The creatures tend to be most commonly found in rocky mountain streams and lakes with clear fast-running water, and are known to dine on crabs, lobsters and large fish.
The giant salamander holds a treasured place in Chinese mythology and has been nick-named 'wa wa yu' - or 'baby fish' - in Chinese because its distress call is said to sound like the cry of a baby.
The skin of the water-dwelling creature has been long said to have anti-ageing benefits for humans, although there is no scientific evidence whatsoever to support this claim.