RAUK - Archived Forum - Natterjacks Maybe

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Natterjacks Maybe:

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manders
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Joined: 20 Mar 2005
No. of posts: 13


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Posted: 20 Mar 2005

On a walk today we spotted toad spawn in a local pond, allong with numerous mating couples.  The spawn was in single strands.  At the time I wasnt sure what distinguishes Natterajcks from Common toads, and therefore didnt get to look for the yellow stripes.  The pond was a permanent one, in a small wooded area, next to the sandy shoreline of the Mersey river at Hale Village.  As far as I know Natterjacks have never been sighted here, but are seen much further around the coastline at Formby.  What are the odds that they are Natterjacks?


Caleb
Forum Coordinator
Joined: 17 Feb 2003
No. of posts: 448


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Posted: 21 Mar 2005
It's unlikely that they are natterjacks- natterjacks usually breed much later in the year.

Common toads are also much more likely than natterjacks to live in wooded areas- natterjacks prefer open areas with loose soil or sand that they can burrow in.

If you can see the toads, you'll be able to distinguish them easily- the yellow stripe is very obvious in natterjacks.
manders
Member
Joined: 20 Mar 2005
No. of posts: 13


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Posted: 21 Mar 2005

The wooded area is very very small and right next to the sandy shoreline allong the Mersey estuary, also the soil is very sandy in the surrounding area.  What got my interest orginally was the single strands of eggs rather than the double strands of common toads.  Now i've read a bit about them I will go back and see if i can positively ID them.  Also the male toads were noticeably smaller than the common frogs which were also there.


Caleb
Forum Coordinator
Joined: 17 Feb 2003
No. of posts: 448


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Posted: 21 Mar 2005
The 'single strands' thing can be a bit confusing.

Both species have two rows of black eggs in a single string of jelly when the spawn is fresh, but the natterjack spawn separates into a single row of eggs after a few days.

Common toad spawn will separate into one row if it's stretched enough, so you need to look at unstretched spawn more than a couple of days old to be sure.

Either way, if you get a good look at the toads, there'll be no doubt.
manders
Member
Joined: 20 Mar 2005
No. of posts: 13


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Posted: 21 Mar 2005

Youre right, just been down there to check, and they are definately common toads, also the spawn was stretched out, and caught around various roots and things under the water.  Slightly dissapointing, but I didnt know we had any type of toad so not a total disspaointment.


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