European Common Toad Saved From The Strimmer

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Due to the crazy amount of rain we’ve had this spring, parts of the garden has turned into a jungle, therefore today, armed with a strimmer I began the clean up. I always check and walk through an area when strimming and usually leave an area where things can escape to.

Today we found what is probably an old friend we kept seeing last year, a European Common Toad (Bufo bufo). Down here in Southern Europe they can grow to huge sizes and as you can see on the 3rd photo, it’s bigger than my sunglasses!

European Common Toad (Bufo bufo)

They usually stay hidden in the daytime and only discovered it in the thick growth, I moved it to a nice dark and damp place after quickly snapping the photos. They eat invertebrates which they hunt at night and usually walk rather than hop, but will hop to escape quickly. Here in Portugal, we have 2 subspecies, gredosicola and spinosus, however, I’m afraid I don’t know how to tell which one this is. If there are any experts reading, please let me know if its easy to identify.

European Common Toad (Bufo bufo)

Unfortunately, I have heard locals in the Algarve saying that they will “Pee in your eye and make you blind”, of course, this is nonsense, although they do have an unpleasant “bufotoxin” which is used against predators. It can be harmful to pets and even humans, but only if consumed in large amounts.

European Common Toad (Bufo bufo)


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