Wild Fact #936 – Can You Dig It? – Mexican Burrowing Toad

Photo Courtesy of http://rudepundit.blogspot.com/2007_04_01_archive.html

Photo Courtesy of http://rudepundit.blogspot.com/2007_04_01_archive.html

So far this week we have spent time in the deep sea and the disappearing forest of Madagascar so let’s mix it up a little.  This time we are heading undergound to talk about a frog that is quite common but hardly seen.

As the names suggests the Mexican Burrowing Toad has evolved large and powerful legs for digging. As the name doesn’t suggest, the Mexican Burrowing Toad is actually a frog.  The Mexican Burrowing Toad spends the majority of its life underground.  Now, obviously, this is different then most amphibians. The only time these creatures will emerge are after a large rainstorm.  No, they don’t just appreciate a good rainstorm but they do rely on this source of water to lay their eggs. So, after a heavy rainfall they will emerge and lay their eggs in puddles.  Sometimes they may travel up to two kilometers to find this special puddle. The eggs will hatch within a few days and the tadpoles will develop in a few months.  Once the area dries up these specialized frogs will begin to dig back into the earth.

As we all know, the weather can be very unpredictable.  For this reason, the Mexican Burrowing Toad will call and mate during any time of the year.  Hey, you never know when the rain is coming so it is best to be prepared.

Mexican Burrowing Toad Fast Fact: Did you know that humans, polar bears, kangaroos, killer whales and fruit bats have more things in common than a Mexican Burrowing Toad has with any other animal? This specific animal comes from the Jurassic Period (that’s right, the dinosaurs) and is the most evolutionary distinct amphibian alive today.

References:

http://www.edgeofexistence.org/amphibians/species_info.php?id=1355

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