Himalayan toad

This toad relies on “saltation” for movement, which means it jumps rather than walks

L. Shyamal

Nestled in the high-altitude ecosystems of the Himalayas, the Himalayan toad is an intriguing amphibian that thrives in an environment as harsh as it is beautiful. Less conspicuous than its vibrant rainforest cousins, this toad sports a more subdued palette that blends seamlessly into the rocky and leaf-strewn landscapes it calls home.

The Himalayan toad is robust and stocky. Its skin, often mottled brown or grey, is perfect for camouflage among the stones and shrubs of its mountainous terrain. The texture of its skin is typically bumpy, a characteristic feature of many toad species, which aids in retaining moisture in its dry surroundings. They are primarily nocturnal, coming out at dusk to feed and mate. During the day, they take refuge under rocks or bury themselves in loose soil to escape the daytime chill and predators. Their diet mainly consists of small insects, which they catch with their quick, sticky tongues.

Living at elevations often above 3,000 meters, these toads have developed several adaptations to survive the low oxygen levels and cooler temperatures. Their breeding cycle is timed perfectly with the onset of the monsoon season, ensuring that their offspring have the best chance of survival in the transient abundance of water.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Bhutan
2020
China
2020
Tibet [or Xizang], Yunnan
India
2020
Nepal
2020
Pakistan
2020

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No