The wonderful common toad will be migrating to its breeding grounds now. They take the saying ‘there’s safety in numbers’ seriously and migrate en masse. These migratory journeys can be perilous especially as we tend to dissect habitats with roads and housing estates. This is where our lovely volunteers from Toads on Roads come in. Rather than lots of squished toads, we have volunteers that visit migratory crossing places with buckets and torches to transport the toads from one side of the road to the other. The numbers can vary, but there can be hundreds travelling at once, so that means lots of buckets and volunteers are needed!
Once safely across, the toads can go about their business getting to their ancestral breeding pond. The males get to the breeding grounds first and wait for females to arrive. You may get the odd male straggler that manages to grab a female before she gets to the pond- successfully securing his mate.
Once the toads have found mates, the main event begins- spawning! A toad’s spawn is unlike frogs in that it is laid in two long strings rather than being laid in clumps. The strings are attached to underwater plants and one female can lay as many as 1500 eggs! This is to ensure the next generation of toads is secure.
Toads waste no time leaving the water once spawning has been completed. Back to slurping slugs at night at their earliest convenience!
If you would like to get involved and support our toads please check out our website for a Toad Patrol near you.