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Arizona Toad Bufo microscaphus


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Arizona Toad
credit: Dave Beaudette/CCSA

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Alternate name: Southwestern Toad

Family: Bufonidae, Toads view all from this family

Description Brown/olive, spotted back.

Dimensions 5-7.7cm. (2-3")

Warning Toads have enlarged glands (called the paratoid glands) on the side of the neck, one behind each eye. These glands secrete a viscous white poison that gets smeared in the mouth of any would-be predator, inflaming the mouth and throat and causing nausea, irregular heart beat, and, in extreme cases, death. Toads pose a danger to pets, which may pounce on and bite them. Humans should take care to wash their hands after handling a toad, and to avoid touching the mouth or eyes until having done so.

Voice Musical trill. 10 seconds long.

Breeding March-July. Eggs laid on strings attached to bottom of pools. Rain dependant.

Habitat Freshwater marches, freshwater springs, ponds, open excavations, irrigated land, and seasonally flooded agricultural land.

Range Colorado River headwaters, Utah, Nevada, Arizona through New Mexico into Mexico.

Discussion Sometimes forages during the day, mostly nocturnal. Arroyo toad formerly thought to be a subspecies.