Sonoran Desert Toad

Incilius alvarius;  At 7 inches (18 cm) or more this is one of the largest toads native to North America. Adults have a uniformly green to greenish-gray dorsum (topside of the body) and creamy white venter (underside). Large white turbercles, or “warts,”are found at the angle of the jaw, but aside from the large parotoid glands and a few large lumps on the hind legs, this species has relatively smooth skin. Found from Central Arizona to southwestern New Mexico and Sinaloa, Mexico; historically entered southeastern California, though it has not been seen there since the 1970s. This toad is common in the Sonoran Desert. It occurs in a variety of habitats including creosote bush desertscrub, grasslands up into oak-pine woodlands, and thornscrub and tropical deciduous forest in Mexico. Sonoran Desert toads have extremely potent, defensive toxins that are released from several glands (primarily the paratoids) in the skin. Animals that harass this species generally are intoxicated through the mouth, nose, or eyes. Dog owners should be cautious: the toxins are strong enough to kill full grown dogs that pick up or mouth the toads. Symptoms of intoxication are excessive salivation, irregular heartbeat and gait, and pawing at the mouth.

Exposure: 1/20 sec;   f/5.0;   ISO 400;  70mm; Pentax K5 with Sigma 70mm f2.8 DG Macro.

I don’t know, but this guy’s skin doesn’t look smooth to me. We see them all over the place in my town near the beginning of the monsoon season, usually right before they get run over by the car.


~ by kbfotografix on October 26, 2012.

3 Responses to “Sonoran Desert Toad”

  1. Definitely not a toad a princess would want to kiss. Great picture. Like how you captured his facial details.

  2. Seriously disgusting. I’ve never gotten a good close-up look at these. Can’t say I was missing out. Blechk!

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