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Boreal Toad (Anaxyrus boreas)

Adults: 6-12.5cm (2.5-5in long from snout to vent. Has many warts; usually gray, brown or green; noticeable paratoid glands (bumps behind eyes); usually has conspicuous white stripe down middle of back (not present or as conspicuous in recently morphed young). The thumb base in males is dark and enlarged. 

Eggs: Females lay strands of up to 12,000 eggs in single file; multiple females may lay overlapping strands of eggs. They are frequently wrapped around vegetation and in shallow water.

Tadpoles: Tadpoles are dark brown or black. They hatch in about 10 days, and swarm in dense groups (sometimes numbering in the millions) in the warmest and most shallow waters they can find.


1. This animal is found in grasslands and woodlands near freshwater (breeds in ponds, lakes, streams, rainy pools); Most often in open areas. Found in coastal forests.

2. These toads are terrestrial as adults and can be found in a wide range of elevations!

3. The Boreal Toad is often referred to as the Western Toad but is distinguished by its northern range.

4. They are most active during the day and their voice is a “soft birdlike clucking”

5. The toads eat worms, slugs and insects, but will also eat larger animals when possible.

6. The “Paratoid Glands” behind the eyes, in conjunction with the warts on their backs, secrete a bitter toxin that repels most attackers.

Boreal (Western) Toad Video

Metamorph Emergence

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