The Common Spadefoot Toad is an amphibian that is native to North America. It is a toad that only has seven different species and is considered a small family.
What Does the Common Spadefoot Toad Look Like?
The Common Spadefoot Toad is a toad that has short legs, protruding eyes and they are usually green or brown. They usually grow around 2-3 inches long and are round and wide.
They have a nickname called the “spadefoot” because they have a bone in their back leg that allows them to burrow better than other animals.
The skin of the Common Spadefoot Toad is smooth.
Where Does the Common Spadefoot Toad Live?
The Common Spadefoot Toad lives in areas that are dryer and where there are ponds, creeks or other water areas. Most of these toads are found in North America along riverbeds such as close to the Mississippi River.
These Common Spadefoot Toads are also found in Canada and in northwestern United States. Some of these toads are also found in Texas, Mexico and other places.
What Does the Common Spadefoot Toad Eat?
The Common Spadefoot Toad will eat crickets, caterpillars, spiders, millipedes, worms and snails but they will also eat plankton. At first, they are considered to be herbivores as tadpoles but then they become carnivores after they reach adulthood.
Tadpoles of the Common Spadefoot Toad will eat their siblings if they are unable to find food.
What is Different About the Common Spadefoot Toad?
Since the Common Spadefoot Toad tadpoles will eat their own kind, they developed differently than other frogs and they grew stronger jaw muscles, smaller intestine and larger heads. They also have sharper faces so they can eat their prey.
There are some subspecies of the Common Spadefoot Toad including the Couch’s Spadefoot Toad, the Eastern Spadefoot Toad, the Great Basin Spadefoot Toad, the Hurter’s Spadefoot Toad, New Mexico Spadefoot Toad, Plains Spadefoot Toad and the Western Spadefoot Toad.
Are the Common Spadefoot Toads in Danger?
Some of the Spadefoot Toads have been put on the endangered list such as in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Connecticut and Rhode Island. This has happened because the pools and ponds that they lay eggs in have gotten shallower and dry up before the tadpoles have a chance to change to toads.
What is Interesting About the Common Spadefoot Toad?
One of the most interesting things about the Common Spadefoot Toad is that it has feet that can dig and burrow into the dirt better than any other amphibian. This is where it got its name “spadefoot.”
During the winter months, the Common Spadefoot Toad will dig deep into the mud and hibernate there until winter is over and the weather gets warmer.
Facts About the Common Spadefoot Toads:
- Common Spadefoot Toads go through metamorphosis which means their bodies change so they can live on land and in water.
- Most of the time, the Common Spadefoot Toad is found underground.
- When the Common Spadefoot Toad is not found underground, it is found walking on the ground.
- The Common Spadefoot Toad will dig backwards with its feet and the hard bone that helps them to dig. They will dig into the ground and burrow for safety and for hibernation.
- The Common Spadefoot Toad has yellow vertical pupils.
- The back foot of the Common Spadefoot Toad is flat and has hard fingernails.
- The Common Spadefoot Toad excretes a smell that smells like garlic to fight off prey.
What Did You Learn?
- What is the Common Spadefoot Toad? The Common Spadefoot Toad is an amphibian that is found in the North America and in Canada.
- What does the Common Spadefoot Toad eat? The Common Spadefoot Toad eats insects and other small animals.
- What is special about the Common Spadefoot Toad? The thing that is special about this toad is that it has a bone in its back feet that help it to burrow better than other animals.
- Where does the Common Spadefoot Toad live most of the time? Most of the time, the Common Spadefoot Toad lives underground in burrows.
- Is the Common Spadefoot Toad in danger? The Common Spadefoot is endangered in many different states and it is illegal to catch them in many states.