ANIMAL: Surinam Toad Pipa pipa Type of Animal: Frog Habitat: Turbid/muddy/slow-moving water bodies-tropical/subtropical lowland forest pools, tropical/subtropical lowland forest muddy river bottoms, flooded forest muddy river bottoms, streams, rivers, swamps, freshwater marshes, murky ponds, canals, tropical/subtropical lowland forest, moist leaf litter Location(s): Guiana Shield, far NE/S/part of NW Venezuela, E Colombia, E Ecuador, E Peru, N Bolivia, W/NE Brazil, Trinidad, Tobago Appearance: Looks like mottled brown to gray leaf, almost completely flat, triangular head, broadly webbed feet, small star-like appendages on front toes, tiny eyes Food/Diet: Worms, insects, crustaceans, larvae, fish, carrion, smaller amphibians (including smaller individuals of own species) Status in Wild: Stable Conservation: Breeding in zoos, aquariums, herpetoculture, & aquaculture Lifestyle: Solitary or in trios (often a male & 2 females) but can be all same sex as well Additional Info: Called: Male Female Young: Tadpole/Toadlet/Froglet Group: Knot Weight: Male: 3.5 oz Female: 5.6 oz Gestation: 3-5 months Life Span: 6-8 years Body Length: Male: 4.17-6.06 in Female: 4.13-6.73 in Young: 0.7 in Males call to females underwater by making clicking sound. Males also make these sounds when fighting. Females release 60-100 eggs w/ male fertilizing them & pushing them onto her back, where they stick to skin, forming honeycomb structure of pockets. Tadpole stage occurs in skin for 3.5 months, until emerging as froglets/toadlets by squeezing through pore-like openings, loosening mom’s skin. After all froglets/toadlets emerge from skin, skin layer shed. Froglet/toadlet stage lasts until 22-24 months old. Camouflage aids in catching prey & protecting itself from potential predators. Uses star-tipped fingers to sense movement. Very shy & secretive in the wild. Mating can last as long as 12 hours. Sometimes kept as pets. Sometimes called Common Surinam Toad. Fun Fact(s): Can trigger trypophobia (fear of irregular patterns/small hole clusters) due to female’s back. Young have no gills/tails (reabsorbed during development). Can remain underwater for up to an hour. Since they don’t have teeth/tongue, prey simply swallowed whole in single gulp. These frogs completely aquatic, never leaving water. Called toads due to rough skin-they’re actually frogs. Also called star-fingered toad due to tiny star-shaped fingertips on forelimbs.
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