Gastrophryne carolinensis, 14 September 2012

Gastrophryne carolinensis, the Eastern narrowmouth toad;
Lake county, Florida (14 September 2012).

The Eastern narrowmouth toad is Florida’s loan representative of Family Microhylidae, a chonky clade of amphibians. Not quite true toads and not quite true frogs, narrowmouth toads sport robust, smooth, round bodies and tiny, almost-comical heads and mouths. They spend much of their time hidden beneath surface debris, hidden from view. This particular individual suffered the relative indignity of being photographed on a flower in my mother’s backyard; this is not, as they say, an in situ shot. I can’t think of any reason an Eastern naurowmouth toad would choose to climb on top of a flower. They’d much rather be in the dirt. Anyhow, this little narrowmouth toad was quickly returned to its dirtier, grungier habitat in the back corner of the yard shortly after this and a few other photos were taken.

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