Toad Frog

By William T. Hathaway

American Toad

The American Toad (Bufo americanus) averages from 2 to 4 inches in length.

Compared to related frogs, toads have weaker hind legs and rough, dry, warty skin rather than smooth moist skin. They are more terrestrial, and must return to water to lay their eggs. They require semi-permanent water for reproduction. Females may lay up to 8,000 eggs in two gelatinous strings. Eggs hatch in 3-12 days, and tadpoles transform into adults after developing for 50-60 days. Adults and young toads burrow into the ground to avoid hot dry spells but are more active during rainy weather, especially at night.

Although toads discourage predators by secreting a poison from their skin, handling toads does not cause warts.

It is not fully understood why toad populations are disappearing from local areas.