Guttural toad

Amietophrynus gutturalis

Common name:

Guttural toad

Scientific name:

Amietophrynus gutturalis

Alternative common names:

African common toad, marbled toad, common toad, common African toad, square-marked toad, leopard toad, greater cross-marked toad, Lobatsi toad, flat-backed toad. 

Guttural toads are large toads that are very adaptable and can live in a variety of environments, which means they do not suffer much from habitat loss. They have no major predators and as their population increases, they are spreading through southern Africa. 

Additional Info

  • Where does this species come from?

    Taita Hills in Kenya and other highland areas of East Africa all the way south to Durban in South Africa and west to Angola.

    What is its invasive status in South Africa?

    NEMBA Category 1b.

    Where in South Africa is it a problem?

    It is found across South Africa.

    How does it spread?

    It is highly adaptable and is spreading through southern Africa as its population increases.

    Why is it a problem?

    Guttural toads pose a serious threat to the survival of indigenous frog and toad species, especially the endangered western leopard toad, as they compete for habitat, resources and breeding grounds.

    What does it look like?

    Description: Males range from 64–90mm and females from 62-120mm in snout-vent length. The upper surface is buffish-brown with variable irregular dark brown markings. Two pairs of brown spots between the eyes form a cross-shaped mark, and there is often a pale stripe down the spine. The front legs are edged with distinctive white tubercles and there is a red patch on the back of the thighs. The underparts are pale and granular and the male has a dark throat. The parotid glands are prominent and the toes are only slightly webbed. Habitat: This species is found in savannah, grasslands and agricultural areas at elevations ranging from 0-1 900m. It is tolerant of disturbed habitats and can be found in towns and cities. Breeding: Breeding takes place in small permanent water bodies. In areas with no permanent water bodies, the breeding begins with the first heavy rains. Guttural toads lay around 25 000 eggs, which wrap around aquatic vegetation.