Wild life and nature of Samos, Ikaria & Fournoi

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Reptiles & amphibians

Mediterranean toad (Bufo spinosus)


The Mediterranean toad is a big and vigorous species, with an average body length of 59-112 mm for males, and 65-180 mm for the females. Its colour is a consistent brown, although, there can also be yellow, green, and red shades. The underside is usually yellowish or light brown, and it can differ in juveniles. The larvae are dark brown too, or completely black. The back is characterised by conspicuous turbercles, and granules on the underside. The eyes are striking and the pupil is horizontally oval, containing a red iris.


The B. spinosus distribution covers a wide area, it goes in fact from NW Africa (Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco) to Spain. It can be found in a significant variety of habitats, such as wetlands, sand dunes, forests, river beds, bare plains, meadows, and also areas with intense human activity (e.g. farms and suburban areas).


Mediterranean toads are insectivores, which means that their diet is only composed by the consumption of insects. They feed mainly on arthropods, however, the population’s diet depends on the local food availability; according to the surrounding environment, some feed on ants, some and beetles, and others prefer spiders.

Protection Status

This species is listed as “Least concern” by IUCN Red List.

Interesting Fact

It’s a very drought-tolerant species, as it is able to absorb 21% of water from its body weight per minute. On the other hand, it can also resist to significant losses of water, at it has ability to lose 20% of water in its body weight.

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