Southern Toad

The Southern Toad (classified by scientists as Bufo terrestris) is about 3 inches in length. It has a knobby head and bumps between the eyes. The Southern toad is usually reddish brown in color with large warts behind the eyes. Some toads will have dark brown or black spots on the back. The Southern toad has glands on either side of its neck that hold a thick, white poison meant to harm or kill any preditors.

Southern toads live in areas with loose soil where they can easily burrow in the ground. They are found throughout the southern USA in moderately warm, open areas near a water source. During the day, Southerns will stay in their burrows but they are often seen at night when it feeds on insects, spiders, and other small bugs that are attracted to light sources. It is also at night when the call of the toad is best heard. Males make a croaking noise as they enter water or feed. These animals do not mind being near people; they seem to prefer the lights of suburbs to help attract insects to eat.

A female Southern will lay up to 3,000 eggs in the warm summer months in shallow pools of standing water after heavy rains. They also prefer flooded meadows. Eggs usually hatch within a few days, but the tadpoles take up to 2 months to develop into young Southern toads.

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