Guardian Nature School Team Contact Blog Project Noah Facebook Project Noah Twitter

A worldwide community photographing and learning about wildlife

Join Project Noah!
nature school apple icon

Project Noah Nature School visit nature school

Western Toad

Anaxyrus boreas


The western toad (Anaxyrus boreas) more commonly known as Bufo boreas (both names accurate) is a large toad species, between 5.6 and 13 cm long, of western North America. It has a white or cream dorsal stripe, and is dusky gray or greenish dorsally with skin glands concentrated within the dark blotches. Its parotoid glands are oval, widely separated, and larger than the upper eyelids. It has a mottled venter and horizontal pupils but lacks cranial crests. Compared to females, males have smoother skin, reduced dorsal blotching, and nuptial pads (thickened skin) on their forefeet during breeding season. In juveniles of this species, the dorsal stripe is weak or absent. Large young have prominent dorsal and ventral spotting and yellow feet.


Western toads are widespread throughout the mountainous areas of northwestern North America, ranging from sea level to elevations near or above regional treeline, or 10,000 feet (305–3,050 m) in elevation. Western toads occupy desert streams and springs, grasslands, and mountain meadows; they are less common in heavily wooded regions. They are usually found in or near ponds, lakes (including saline lakes), reservoirs, rivers, and streams.

Species ID Suggestions

Sign in to suggest organism ID

No Comments

Spotted by

British Columbia, Canada

Spotted on Aug 3, 2012
Submitted on Dec 16, 2012

Related Spottings

Fowler's Toad American Toad American toad American Toad

Nearby Spottings

Spotting Spotting Great Horned owl Siberian Aster
Noah Guardians
Noah Sponsors
join Project Noah Team

Join the Project Noah Team