Here’s the toad!

Did you spot it in today’s earlier post? Here’s the original photo:

And here’s Mr. Toad:

Now we need some assistance here. Stephen thinks it’s “either a Western Toad (Anaxyrus boreas) or maybe Woodhouse’s Toad (Anaxyrus woodhousii).” Do readers know?

16 Comments

  1. insidephotos
    Posted July 19, 2017 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think it is either the Western or Woodhouse’s toad. The markings around the face and on the body are all wrong.

    Looks like a good match for the Leopard Toad.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=leopard+toad&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi6q8XA7JXVAhXKOj4KHWwvD4UQ_AUICygC&biw=1415&bih=767#imgrc=C20k3jDCj4qR-M:

    • rickflick
      Posted July 19, 2017 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

      The leopard toad is indigenous to South Africa, according to Wikipedia. Maybe leopard is a local common name for something else?

  2. Posted July 19, 2017 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

    Where was the photo taken? I presume somewhere in Idaho, but specifics would help.

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted July 19, 2017 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

      I Loving Creek, a tributary of Silver Creek, about four miles west of Picabo, Idaho.

      • Stephen Barnard
        Posted July 19, 2017 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

        *In*

        • Posted July 20, 2017 at 10:19 am | Permalink

          Pretty sure it’s the Western Toad, Bufo boreas. Picabo seems to be slightly out of the known range of woodhousii based on national range maps, but the key thing is that, when blown up to full resolution, I can see that the toad does not appear to have cranial crests (bony ridges under the skin by the orbits/front end of parotoid glands). Woodhousii has them, boreas doesn’t, so it’s boreas. On the generic name, there is a strong wave of splitting running throughout herpetological taxonomy, and that’s what leads some to call it Anaxyrus boreas— the widespread genus Bufo has been split into Bufo, Anaxyrus, Rhinella, etc. Sometimes this recent splitting reflects actual gains in knowledge, but in many cases it’s just a personal preference that I think betrays a misunderstanding of what species names are for.

          • Stephen Barnard
            Posted July 20, 2017 at 10:20 am | Permalink

            Thanks.

  3. Stephen Barnard
    Posted July 19, 2017 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    The only two toads I find listed in Idaho are the Western and Woodhouse’s. They look pretty similar and they’re in the same genus.

    By the way, some places I see the genus as Anaxyras and other places as Bufo. What’s with that? I thought scientific names were supposed to be universal and consistent.

    • rickflick
      Posted July 19, 2017 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

      It resembles an American toad found in the Eastern US crossed with a frog species. There is a record of an American toad in Idaho:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Top_view_of_an_American_Toad_found_in_Southeast_Idaho.JPG

      • Stephen Barnard
        Posted July 19, 2017 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

        Same genus, but the range looks questionable. I think the Western Toad is just the western version.

    • ratabago
      Posted July 19, 2017 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

      “I thought scientific names were supposed to be universal and consistent.”

      These are desirable ideals. But scientific names are also supposed to reflect degrees of evolutionary relationship. As new data, particularly genetic data, comes to light it sometimes shows the older scientific names misrepresent those relationships, and so committees update the names.

      The changing names in the Australian terrestrial orchids, the Banksias/Dryandras, Eucalypts, and Agamids drives me nuts. Such is life.

      • ratabago
        Posted July 19, 2017 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

        …and htm fail, again. Only the quote is meant to be in italics.

        • Stephen Barnard
          Posted July 19, 2017 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

          I get what you’re saying, but for an entire common genus of toads to have confused names seems extreme.

  4. jamesgart
    Posted July 19, 2017 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    YOU CAN’T SEE IT IN THE ORIGINAL PHOTO!


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