Puerto Rican Crested Toad

ANIMAL:
Puerto Rican Crested Toad Peltophryne lemur

Type of Animal:
Toad

Habitat:
Underground burrows, low-lying areas w/ rocky crevices and/or well-drained soil, pools, rocky limestone outcrops in semiarid seasonal evergreen forest, subtropical dry forest w/ small deciduous trees, semievergreen/evergreen subtropical moist forest, upland deciduous/semievergreen forest, scrub forest, karst regions, freshwater lowland areas, coastal dry forest, subtropical humid forest along karst fringes, limestone cavities/holes, earthen walls, embankments, nest cavities by Puerto Rican Todies, underground spider lairs, crab burrows

Location(s):
Formerly found throughout Puerto Rico, Virgin Gorda, & St. John. Now only in S & N Puerto Rico.

Appearance:
Textured pebbled skin w/ striking marbled golden eyes/distinctive long upturned snout, males olive green & gold, females duller brown w/ rougher skin & higher crest

Food/Diet:
Adults eat insects, insect larvae, worms, spiders, snails, millipedes, centipedes, carrion, baby mice. Tadpoles eat algae, carrion, & phytoplankton.

Status in Wild:
Critically Endangered

Conservation:
Breeding in zoos, wildlife centers, & aquariums. Reintroductions into native/former range.

Lifestyle:
Solitary or groups of 10-40 toads. Toadlets especially social.

Additional Info:

Called:
Male
Female
Young: Tadpole/Toadlet
Group: Knot
 
Weight:
Male: 1.75 oz
Female: 3.5-5.25 oz
 
Gestation:
1 day 

Life Span:
5-10 years

Body Length:
Male: 3 in
Female: 4 in
Young: 0.39 in

Main predators of adults are cats, dogs, cane toads, large crabs, herons, lizards, rats, mongooses, & bullfrogs. Dragonfly larvae eat tadpoles.
 
Males croak to attract females.
 
Single female can lay up to 15,000 eggs, which hatch a day later. Tadpoles stay in tadpole stage until 2-3.5 weeks old, when they move to land becoming toadlets, until reaching maturity at 10-12 months old.
 
Critically endangered due to water pollution, restricted range, invasive predators, competition w/ invasive cane toads & American Bullfrogs, habitat loss/destruction, drainage, natural disasters, drought, development, & diseases.
 
Also called Ridge-Headed Toad & Puerto Rican Toad.
 
Active at night (nocturnal).
 
To track reintroduced toads, tiny radio transmitter “backpacks” placed on some to track movements.
 
Breeding highly dependent on rains, w/ breeding occurring in wet/rainy season.
 
Very secretive in the wild.

Fun Fact(s):
Only native toad in Puerto Rico & British Virgin Islands.
 
One hatched via in-vitro fertilization in November 2019.
 
Thought to be extinct in 1931 & listed as so until population rediscovered in 1966 in Isabela, NW Puerto Rico. Another population rediscovered in Guanica Commonwealth Forest in 1984 in SW Puerto Rico (most important stronghold for this species).

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