The Colorado River Toad is a toad that is also known as the Sonoran Desert Toad. It is an amphibian that is found in northern Mexico and in the southwestern part of the United States.
What Does the Colorado River Toad Look Like?
The Colorado River Toad is a toad that can grow up to 7.5 inches long. It is considered the largest toad that is found in the United States. The Colorado River Toad has smooth skin which is thick and is usually green or brown.
They have eyes that are golden, and they also have a gland that is large and bulges out by the ears.
The Colorado River Toad has white warts that are on the corners of their mouth and that cover their legs.
Colorado River Toad Protection
The warts that are found around the mouth and on the legs of the Colorado River Toad are poison. When the Colorado River toad feels threatened, it will let out a secretion of poison that can be deadly to other animals.
When this happens, the secretion makes a sound that is low pitched and sounds like a toot. This lasts about a second and can be very dangerous.
Animals such as dogs and raccoons have died from getting poison from this animal.
Unlike other amphibians, the Colorado River Toad is interesting because it gets water by what is called osmotic absorption. This means that the toad can stand in water or sit in water and water will absorb into its body.
The toad also has areas in its skin and stomach that allows it to collect water fast. When the Colorado River Toad is sitting in small areas of water or by wet objects, it is probably absorbing the water into its body.
Where Does the Colorado River Toad Live?
The Colorado River Toad lives close to the lower part of the Colorado River and the Gila River in California, New Mexico, Arizona and Mexico. They live in desert areas and in areas that are dry.
Most of the time, the Colorado River Toad will live close to streams or water areas. They will also be found in burrows that rodents make.
Behavior of the Colorado River Toad
The Colorado River Toad is nocturnal which means it is most active during the nighttime. Most of the time, you will find the toad staying underground when it is very hot out. This allows the toad to regulate its body temperature since it is cold-blooded. Cold-blooded means that the animal cannot regulate its body temperature and has to rely on the environment to do so.
What Does the Colorado River Toad Eat?
The Colorado River Toad eats mostly insects and small rodents. It is known to eat spiders, snails, beetles, grasshoppers, mice, lizards and other animals. The Colorado River Toad is a carnivore which means it eats other animals.
Does the Colorado River Toads Go Through Metamorphosis?
The Colorado River Toad goes through metamorphosis. Metamorphosis is when an animal’s body changes. They will gather at the pools and will lay eggs around May or July when the weather is warm. The female toad will lay up to 8,000 eggs at one time.
As the tadpole’s hatch in up to 12 days, they will begin to change. They will first have fins and a long tail and gills like a fish and as they get older, they will grow two legs and then two more. Later, they will lose their tail and will only live on land.
When the animals move to land, they will spend most of their life underground or on the ground and will mostly go to the water only to lay eggs.
Facts About Colorado River Toads:
- The toxic that the Colorado River Toad excretes is called a hallucinogenic which means it can cause the animal to hallucinate before it dies.
- The Colorado River Toad has shiny skin and has warts on its legs and mouth.
- The toad has a light-colored belly.
- There are different rules on how many Colorado River Toads a person can catch. For example, in Arizona, a person can only catch 10 Colorado River Toads.
- In California, it is illegal to capture a Colorado River Toad because they are considered endangered there.
What Did You Learn?
- What is the Colorado River Toad? The Colorado River Toad is an amphibian that is found in Mexico and Southern part of the United States.
- What does the Colorado River Toad eat? The Colorado River Toad is a carnivore which means it eats other animals. It is known to eat insects, beetles, slugs, mice and other animals.
- Where does the Colorado River Toad live? The Colorado River Toad lives close to water ways and in areas that have high grasses where they can hide.
- Is the Colorado River Toad poisonous? The Colorado River Toad has warts on its mouth and legs that excretes a poison that can be deadly to other animals.
- Are there rules about keeping Colorado River Toads? In some areas, having a Colorado River Toad is illegal because they are endangered in some areas.