Fowler's Toad (Bufo fowleri)
Description: Highly variable in color and pattern, the Fowler’s toad may be brown, tan, gray, olive, greenish or reddish. Often boldly spotted, it is more likely to have a greenish tint than any of our other toads. It usually has a pale stripe running down the middle of its back. The Fowler’s toad closely resembles the American toad but has less pronounced cranial crests that are flush with the parotoid glands; smaller warts on the lower leg section (tibia); three or four large warts within each large dark spot on the back; and often a single dark spot on an otherwise whitish chest. Males are smaller than females and have dark throats.
Habitats and Habits: These familiar amphibians are the most common toads in many parts of the Piedmont. They also occur over much of the Coastal Plain and Mountains. They are primarily nocturnal but may also be active by day. Several thousand eggs are laid in long strings and hatch in a few days. The small blackish tadpoles transform in about three to eight weeks. Fowler’s toads are fish-tolerant and breed in permanent water as well as temporary wetlands. Farm ponds have provided good artificial habitat for these toads and may have increased their numbers in some rural areas. Fowler’s toads may hybridize with American or southern toads in areas where their ranges overlap.
Call: Fowler’s toads breed mostly from April to July. Their call is a loud, nasal “waaaaaah,” lasting about one to four seconds. Males also utter a chirping “release call” if handled or mistakenly grasped by another male.
Frog Fact: As with other toads, Fowler’s toads have skin secretions that are toxic or distasteful to many predators.