portrait of a Midwife Toad...
By audave2505, Nov 13 2020 05:00AM
Recently a friend living in Sainte-Alvère sent me this nice photo of a Midwife Toad he found whilst checking drains at his new house. It's a rather attractive olive-green colour compared to the grey indivduals I've seen back at our old house at Mauzac. The midwife of the name is the male who carries the female's eggs on his back for a couple of weeks before depositing them in a pond. The yellowish spawn strings are actually wrapped around the males hind legs. For such a small amphibian (adults are only about two inches long) they have some of the largest tadpoles. It's a very common species in Dordogne, at least around wooded hamlets in limestone country. The soft whistle is often mistaken for Scop's Owl, but that call is a louder and electronic-sounding short whistle. In Dordogne, Scop's Owls inhabit more open landscapes for example around Issigeac in the south-west.
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