Anaxyrus boreas boreas
formerly Bufo boreas boreas
Boreal Toad / Crapaud de l'Ouest
This toad is usually green or brown with a light stripe down the back. Like all
toads, it has a dry, warty skin. The warts may be reddish brown and are surrounded
by black marks. Unlike other toads it has no
cranial crests although it
does have oval parotoid glands.
The belly is pale with dark mottling. Adults reach up to 12 cm in size.
call is a quiet peeping like little chicks.
The Boreal Toad is the only true toad found in British Columbia.Along the eastern
edge of its range in Alberta, it may overlap with the
Canadian Toad which has cranial crests
fused into a bony hump, or "boss", between the eyes.
The Boreal Toad is found throughout most of British Columbia, the west central
third of Alberta and just into the south east corner of the Yukon as well was much
of the western United States.
This species can be found in boreal forest, sub-alpine and alpine environments up
to 3000 m elevation. It is usually near ponds, streams, rivers and lakes but often
shelters in loose, moist soil or rodent burrows. Breeding takes place in small
shallow ponds and pools, often with a sandy bottom.
Breeding takes place from April to June. Long strings of up to 16,500 eggs are laid
and entwined around submerged vegetation. These hatch in three to twelve days. Larvae
transform in six to eight weeks.
Boreal Toads are usually nocturnal except at high elevations.Their diet includes
worms, slugs and insects. Unlike most toads, Boreal toads walk rather than hop.
When disturbed they may exhibit a defensive posture by raising on their legs and
puffing up with air. This makes it harder for predators to swallow them. They take
two to three years to mature and can live up to 35 years in captivity.
The Boreal Toad has undergone declines across its range.Declines appear to be
related to urban expansion and the conversion of land to agriculture. Habitat
degradation and exotic species may also be affecting this species. The Boreal
Toad is designated Special Concern by