Fowler's Toad
Bufo fowleri

photo by Jeff Humphries        

Listen to the call of the Fowler's toad

Species DescriptionFowler's toad looks similar to the American toad, though it is slightly smaller and has several subtle distinguishing features.  It has 3 or more warts within each dark spot on its back.  There are no greatly enlarged warts on the tibia and the parotoid gland touches the cranial crests behind the eyes.  The color is usually gray or greenish gray without reddish or rusty colors.  Toads are oftentimes encountered on roads, even on dry nights.  Fowler's toads can be identified on the road (by professional toadwatchers) while driving at speeds in excess of 60 mph.  This species makes a series of quick, short hops to get off the road, while the American toad only makes a few larger hops.

HabitatFowler's toads are usually found in association with flood plains and river bottoms, as well as woodland borders.  They dig burrows into the sand in which they hide during the day.  They come out at night to forage on insects.
photo by Jeff Davis

Breeding ActivityThis species does not begin to call until several weeks after the American toad.  At lower elevations in West Virginia, they emerge and begin calling in mid April.  The call is a long, loud, nasal "W-A-A-A-H-H-H".  They can be mistaken for a herd of sheep calling in the night.  Females deposit as many as 8,000 eggs in long, double-row strings.

Range This toad is common throughout West Virginia.

StatusNot Listed.  No evidence of declines.