American Toad Home » Departments » Parks and Recreation » Natural Area Preservation » Amphibians and Reptiles » Frogs and Toads » American Toad Page ContentBufo americanus Identifying Features 2 to 4 inches long; brownish and warty-skinned. Generally common, but has experienced recent local population declines. Tolerates a wide variety of habitats. Most active on rainy, humid evenings. Remain buried in moist soil, leaf litter, and beneath logs or rocks. Burrow deeply into soil during winter and prolonged dry periods and remain dormant until conditions improve. Parotid glands produce whitish secretions which contain steroidal defenses. Attacking predators may experience illness or death due to changes in heart function and blood pressure. Call A long, steady trill lasting about 30 seconds. Breeding Prefer to breed in shallow, temporary waters with little to moderate amounts of emergent and submergent vegetation. Breeding sites include flooded fields, ditches, stock or ornamental ponds, open marshes, and backwaters. Occurs in early April and late May and can last into June or July if temperatures are cooler. Females lay from 2000 to over 20,000 eggs in loops on the bottom of the pond or backwater. Development Eggs hatch in 2-14 days depending on water temperatures. Tadpoles often form large schools. Tadpoles transform into frogs in 6-10 weeks; hundreds of young toads swarm near breeding ponds. Few survive the 2-3 years required to reach sexual maturity. Conservation Note Fairly adaptable, local declines due to loss or degradation of breeding sites. Habitat Type Ephemeral wetlands. Permanent wetlands. Rivers and streams. Forests. Grasslands and savannas. Caves and springs. Agricultural areas. Urban areas.