Nature Quiz
Reptiles and Amphibians - The Common Toad
Common toads have warty skin.

Reptiles and Amphibians - The Common Toad

This quiz has been kindly written by Alasdair Lemon from Froglife, the UK charity committed to amphibian and reptile conservation.

The common toad is a brown/olive-brown coloured amphibian which can be found throughout mainland Britain and Europe. They like to spend most of their time in woodland, scrub or coarse grasslands, returning to ponds in spring. A recent study has shown that this species is not fairing very well throughout the UK and populations have been declining for the past 30 years. This quiz hopes to raise awareness of the common toad and teach you some facts about this brilliant species. If you want to read more about the decline of the common toad and find out about Froglife’s Year of the Toad campaign, head over to their website.

The Froglife species information pages have loads of useful information. Why not have a look before you take the quiz?

  1. Female common toads lay their spawn (eggs) in:

    Their spawn comes in long, jelly-like strings, which contain a double row of eggs
  2. Why do common toads have bumps (glands) located just behind their eyes?
    A way common toads deter predators is by making themselves not taste very nice, they do this by producing a toxin from glands on their heads called the parotoid glands
  3. Scientists think the common toad has declined in the UK by what percentage, over the last 30 years?
    Froglife recently published a study, along with colleagues from Switzerland, that showed toad populations in the UK are declining. The data was gathered by volunteer toad patrollers. To read more about this research head over to the Froglife’s latest news pages
  4. What is a common toad's preferred way of getting around?
    When people think about frogs and toads they imagine them hopping. This is true for frogs, however, toads prefer to crawl as they have shorter legs
  5. Common toads have what type of skin?
    There is an old tale that, if you pick up a toad, you’ll get warts from its warty skin - this is, however, totally false
  6. Common toad tadpoles are what colour?
    The Dragon Finder Project running in Scotland, London and the River Nene, has really useful information all about the different life stages of our native amphibians and reptiles
  7. When a common toad tadpole starts developing into a toadlet, what happens first?
    When common toad tadpoles start going through metamorphosis and start developing into a toadlet, they go through an amazing transformation and become a small version of an adult toad. This all starts with tadpoles developing back legs
  8. Where do common toads spend the winter?
    Common toads don’t hibernate throughout all of winter - they will take advantage of warmer days and will emerge to eat. They like to spend winter in areas where they will be protected from predators, so anywhere they can hide makes a good place. Froglife has advice on helping amphibians and reptiles in your garden
  9. Adult common toads are:
    Adult common toads only eat other animals, such as insects, slugs and spiders
  10. How long does it take for a common toad egg to become a tadpole?
    There are lots of cool things happening inside a common toad egg while it develops into a tadpole. The whole process takes around 14 – 28 days, depending on the weather and environmental conditions while it develops

Author: Graeme Haw

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