Frog of the Week

Plains Spadefoot Toad (Spea bombifrons)

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photo by John P Clare

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Common Name: Plains Spadefoot Toad
Scientific Name: Spea bombifrons
Family: Scaphiopodidae
Locations: Canada, Mexico, United States
US Locations: Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming
Size: around 2.5 inches

The Plains Spadefoot Toad is a secretive toad. It spends most of its time underground only to come up to breed or to feed. They are also nocturnal so its even less likely that you will see them. The Plains Spadefoot Toad is a great burrower because of keratonized sheaths called spades on its rear feet. These help them dig easier. To escape freezing during winter, they even dig below the frost line to survive.

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