Fun Oak Toad Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
May 04, 2023 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Oak Toad facts for kids.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.2 Min

Oak Toads (Anaxyrus quercius ) are the smallest species of toad in North America, growing only 1.75 in (4.4 cm) in length.

They have a pointed nose and short head, a short and flat body with black or brown, and a long white, orange, yellow, or cream color dorsal stripe. On the back of the Oak Toads, there are 4-5 pairs of dark botches and the underside is grayish-white in color.

Oak Toads have poisonous teardrop-shaped parotoid glands which they use to fend off predators on both sides of their bodies.

These toads are a great addition to a pet enthusiast due to them being low maintenance efforts and unique features. If you liked these facts about Oak Toad, then you'll surely like these facts about pool frogs and common frogs too.

Oak Toad Interesting Facts

What type of animal is an Oak Toad?

Oak toads (Anaxyrus quercicus) are diurnal creatures active mostly during the day and solitary. These species spend most of their time hiding under the rocks or buried under the sands.

Tadpoles hatch from their eggs within two months and go through the metamorphosis to become an adult. Tadpoles are greenish or grayish with six to seven black saddles on their tails, spending their time in the water. After becoming adults these tadpoles will leave the water and move towards the land in their new habitat feeding mostly on ants.

What class of animal does an Oak Toad belong to?

Oak Toads (Anaxyrus quercicus) belong to the class of Amphibians and are cold-blooded, four-limb vertebrates. Amphibians mostly inhabit different habitats such as arboreal (living in trees), fresh aquatic ecosystems, terrestrial, and subterranean. Amphibians are creatures that can breathe both on land and water.

How many Oak Toads are there in the world?

An accurate number of Oak Toads is impossible to pinpoint as they have been domesticated all around the world, and their small size makes it difficult to get their total population count from their natural habitat.

Where does an Oak Toad live?

The Oak Toad range stretches across the coastal plains from southeast Virginia to eastern Louisiana and throughout Florida in Southern America.

What is an Oak Toad's habitat?

The habitat of oak toads includes pine-oak, open pine woods, oak scrub, sandy pine flatwoods, and maritime forests. These species prefer grassy and moist areas near pine or oak forests with sandy soil, freshwater shallow pools, and ponds.

During winters these toads hibernate in the burrows of the loose soil in the oak and pine forests.

Who do Oak Toads live with?

Oak Toads are usually solitary creatures but they are found in groups near ponds and shallow pools during mating seasons. These species can live together with others but in a cautionary way.  

How long does an Oak Toad live?

Oak Toads have an average lifespan of nearly two years, and only a few of them have been able to survive for four years in captivity with proper care and diet.

How do they reproduce?

An adult Oak toad reaches its adulthood and sexual maturity at 1.5-2.3 years of age, these species breed from April to October, mostly during the rainy season in shallow pools. Males use their vocal sacs to produce a call to attract the females for breeding.

A female oak toad lays 300-500 eggs on average with a short strand of 4-6 eggs each, these strands are attached to the submerged grass. After the breeding process, many females are found dead because of the austere process.

Egg fertilization happens externally, as the males release their sperm on top of the eggs and get hatched within 3-4 days.

What is their conservation status?

As per the IUCN Red List Oak toads are listed as a species of least concern, but due to the rapid decline in their population throughout many states, the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources has listed these toads as a species of special concern.

Oak Toad Fun Facts

What do Oak Toads look like?

A small Oak Toad held by the fingers of a person.

The Oak Toad (Anaxyrus quercicus) is most active during the day and is native to the coastal plain of North America, and is found in freshwater shallow pools and ponds, where the breeding happens and the eggs are laid on the submerged grass.

These species can be easily identified because of their white or creamy mid-dorsal stripe and black, dark brown spots on their body with clean white front and circular body.

How cute are they?

On a scale of 1-10, the Oak toads score 6 for their unique dorsal stripe, circular, and having one of the smallest toad bodies.

How do they communicate?

Oak Toads recognize their environment with the help of visual, tactile, auditory call, and chemical senses.

Male toads are seen making a loud high pitched chirping call during the breeding seasons to attract the females. These species use these high-pitched calls to indicate and forewarn the predators.

How big is an Oak Toad?

The oak toad can grow up to 1.75 in (4.4 cm) in total length and these species are considered as the smallest toads found in North America. These species contribute towards insect population control despite being so small in size.

How fast can an Oak Toad run?

Unfortunately, the accurate speed of the Oak Toad has not yet been recorded, but naturally, toads are slow, they don't jump to move, they crawl.

How much does an Oak Toad weigh?

Unfortunately, no data is available about the weight of the Oak Toads. These species are relatively smaller and circular in their habitat near the pine forest.

What are the male and female names of the species?

No specific name has been given to either gender of the Oak Toads. Females have a dark-spotted belly which makes it easier to determine their sexes.

What would you call a baby Oak Toad?

A baby Oak Toad is called a tadpole, like other baby toads from other species. These tadpoles are grayish and greenish and have five to six saddle marks on their tails. The complete metamorphosis of the tadpoles happens in 4-6 weeks.

What do they eat?

Adult oak toads are raptorial and mostly prefer ants, these frogs hunt other smaller arthropods and terrestrial insects.

Are they poisonous?

Oak Toads (Anaxyrus quercicus) possess extended teardrop-shaped parotoid glands extending from both sides of their body which contain a poisonous fluid helping them in defending themselves against their predators such as snakes.

Would they make a good pet?

Yes, Oak Toads do make a good pet. Their small and circular size makes them attractive and they are most active during the day which makes it easier to interact with them. It is difficult to feed them because of their smaller size and the small insects which they require can be hard to source.

Did you know...

Oak toads are mostly active during the day but they are also found active during the night in the breeding season which starts from April to September when it rains.  

The Oak toad in North America is found near the coastal plain with shallow pools and ponds which range near the oak and pine forest as their favorable habitats throughout Florida.

They are one of the smallest toads in existence.

There are conservation efforts toward them in North America.

Are Oak Toads poisonous to humans?

Oak toads have parotoid glands which contain poisonous fluids which they use to fend themselves against their predators. Though their poison is enough to fend themselves it has no negative impacts on humans.

How do you care for Oak Toads?

Oak toads are to be fed dust food with calcium powder two to three times a week along with their usual food. A 10-gallon tank is sufficient for oak toads and should have a mixture of sand and oil to recreate their natural habitat.

The tank should be kept at a favorable temperature of 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit. Don't forget to include a large and clean water bowl that should be provided to keep them hydrated!

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other amphibians including Surinam toad facts and natterjack toad facts.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our Oak Toad coloring pages.

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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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