Arizona Toad

Arizona Toad

The Arizona Toad is a stocky toad that is usually grey, beige, or pale yellow. This species has rough, bumpy skin and prominent parotoid glands behind the eyes.
SCIENTIFIC NAME
Anaxyrus microscaphus
CLASSIFICATION
Amphibian
LIFE SPAN
4-5 Years
STATE CONSERVATION STATUS
  • Priority Species
FEDERAL CONSERVATION STATUS
Least Concern
GAME STATUS
Non-Game
  1. Washoe
  2. Humboldt
  3. Pershing
  4. Churchill
  5. Mineral
  6. Lyon
  7. Douglas
  8. Carson City
  9. Storey
  1. Elko
  2. Lander
  3. Eureka
  4. White Pine
  1. Esmeralda
  2. Nye
  3. Lincoln
  4. Clark

Habitat & Range

In Nevada, the Arizona Toad is found exclusively in the Meadow Valley Wash and the Virgin River drainages. They are dependent on water to reproduce and prefer slow moving water.

  • Lakes and reservoirs
  • Springs and springbrooks
  • Warm desert riparian

Threats

  • Habitat Degradation
  • Habitat Loss
  • Invasive Species
  • Water Diversion

Natural History

The Arizona Toad spends its days in sandy burrows until night falls and it cools down. They emerge to forage for a wide variety of invertebrates such as crickets, beetles, ants, spiders, and snails. These small toads have little protection against predators, however, they have a parotoid gland that produces a foul-tasting toxin. Common predators include birds, reptiles, and raccoons.
Rain does not trigger this species to breed, but warming temperatures do. They will wait for water levels to drop before breeding to ensure that there are calm, shallow areas along streams to lay their eggs. They will lay around 4,500 eggs in slimy strands under the water and the eggs usually hatch less than a week after being laid. The rate in which the tadpoles metamorphose into adults depends on temperatures, available resources, and a few other factors.

Fun Facts

Adult Arizona Toads have been known to cannibalize young toads right after they metamorphosed.