Toad'ly Habits!

This is a random funky facts page, so you get to be curious and read everything!


-A Colombian fossil of the cane toad is identical to the present-day cane toad.

I guess there are advantages to sleeping in your urine?  Better ask the cane toad.  Image from Microsoft clipart.

-Cane toads urinate in their home site, so as to maintain moisture in their bedding.  (I guess they don't have to worry about getting up to find the toilet when they're dozing.)


-Cane toads can resorb water from their bladder.  And, they drink through special patches on their rear ends.  (Not as civil as you and I, but the toads don't care.  They'll do anything in front of anyone.)

Toads clean up by eating the old skin.  Microsoft clipart.

-Cane toads regularly eat their skin through a process called exuviation.  The toad inflates its body and makes twisting movements until the old skin splits down the middle of the toad’s back.  Once the skin splits, the toad starts swallowing the skin, which is swallowed in one continuous piece.  Yummy!  This is the equivalent of a human bath…it removes the old skin and dirt and any colonizing microorganisms.  (Be glad that you can simply shower.)

-The cane toad likes to grow…big.  It is the largest of toads.  It can grow to 9 inches in length and weigh 1 kg (2.2 pounds).  Exceptionally large individuals are 2.5 kg and 10 inches.

Toads will eat the cigarette butts without any visible distress.  Image from Microsoft clipart.-Cane toads may eat their young.  But then again, cane toads eat anything that fits in their mouths, including rodents, birds, snakes, lit cigarette butts, ping pong balls, and even feces.  They’ll also eat rotting vegetation and even pet food.  They’ll learn a pet’s feeding schedule.


-The cane toad loves colonizing.  It is a very adaptive creature and is willing to attempt life wherever humans may place them.  They can breed in waters with a pH of 2.0 (the acidity of lemon juice), such as occurs after volcanic activity.


-In the early 1990s, bufotoxin cost $100 per gram.  (No, I don’t know its current price, but don't buy it anyway).Cane toads aren't very intimidated by predators.  They'll raise up on all 4 legs in order to make themselves look bigger, and if that doesn't work, they'll position a poison gland towards the predator, for inspection and warning.  The toads really aren't spray-happy and prefer NOT to blast their poison.  They're friendly until they have to be otherwise.  Image from Microsoft clipart.

-The cane toad has been known to actually approach its own predators.  It will either face its predator, put its head down and raise its back, or turn sideways and lift the far side of its body.  Through these actions, the toad is exposing its poison glands to the predators.  It can actually shoot poison if it feels exceptionally threatened.


-The cane toad doesn’t just use its ears to hear.  It uses the vibrations from its front limbs.  It will also use forearm signaling to communicate, if for some reason it isn’t being heard.The toad sits erect, and may even raise off the ground in order to scare predators.  It isn't spray-happy with the poison.  Image from Microsoft clipart.

-The cane toad “feels” the weather change.  Its ears and lungs are directly connected, so it may be able to sense changes in barometric pressure.

-When it walks, the toad momentarily closes its eyes when altering the elevation of its body.  This helps to prevent motion sickness!


Adult toads are active in the evening.  Image from Microsoft clipart.-The young keep different waking hours than do adults.  Metamorphs are awake during the day, but about 4 days after metamorphosis they transition to the night life.  But, they don’t keep very late hours: adults are most active 1-2 hours after dusk, with decreasing activity until midnight.  Hardly any toads are active after midnight.  This lack of activity may be due to daily metabolic cycles, but perhaps activity increases metabolism.  So it’s a question of causation, better known as the classic “which comes first – chicken or egg”.


Sadly, that's the end of my current list of funky toad habits.  But I'm sure more exist.  I just have to keep thinking and researching.  For now, placate yourself with Anuran odds n' ends.