Car detour lets toads cross road without croaking

Jun 12, 2014 by Kathy Matheson
A baby toad sits along side a road, Wednesday, June 11, 2014, in the Roxborough neighborhood of Philadelphia. A humid and rainy summer night makes for quite a rush hour in Philadelphia as thousands of baby toads try to hop across a busy street. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

It's rush hour in Philadelphia for thousands of baby toads as they hop across a busy residential street on a rainy summer night.

Why do toadlets cross the road? To get to woods on the other side. It's their annual migration through dense vegetation from an abandoned reservoir where they were born.

To help the tiny amphibians survive the trip, volunteers each year set up the Toad Detour. The roadblock reroutes cars so the animals—each about the size of a raisin—can cross the two-lane street safely.

The detour also goes up during mating season. Each spring, adult travel from the woods to their at the reservoir.

About six weeks later, their make the journey in reverse.

A baby toad is shown, Wednesday, June 11, 2014, in the Roxborough neighborhood of Philadelphia. A humid and rainy summer night makes for quite a rush hour in Philadelphia as thousands of baby toads try to hop across a busy street. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

A baby toad sits on a road, Wednesday, June 11, 2014, in the Roxborough neighborhood of Philadelphia. A humid and rainy summer night makes for quite a rush hour in Philadelphia as thousands of baby toads try to hop across a busy street. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

A baby toad sits along side a road, Wednesday, June 11, 2014, in the Roxborough neighborhood of Philadelphia. A humid and rainy summer night makes for quite a rush hour in Philadelphia as thousands of baby toads try to hop across a busy street. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)


Explore further: Kimberley goannas trained in cane toad taste-aversion

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Using the cane toad's poison against itself

Jun 13, 2012

(Phys.org) -- An effective new weapon in the fight against the spread of cane toads has been developed by the University of Sydney, in collaboration with the University of Queensland.

Cane toad pioneers speed up invasions

Jul 30, 2013

(Phys.org) —Climate change is one of a number of stressors that cause species to disperse to new locations. Scientists must be able to predict dispersal rates accurately, as the movement of a new species ...

Borneo rainbow toad seen for 1st time in 87 years

Jul 14, 2011

Scientists scouring the mountains of Borneo spotted a toad species last seen in 1924 by European explorers and provided the world with the first photographs of the colorful, spindly legged creature, a researcher ...

Recommended for you

Dogs hear our words and how we say them

Nov 26, 2014

When people hear another person talking to them, they respond not only to what is being said—those consonants and vowels strung together into words and sentences—but also to other features of that speech—the ...

Amazonian shrimps: An underwater world still unknown

Nov 26, 2014

A study reveals how little we know about the Amazonian diversity. Aiming to resolve a scientific debate about the validity of two species of freshwater shrimp described in the first half of the last century, ...

Factors that drive sexual traits

Nov 26, 2014

Many male animals have multiple displays and behaviours to attract females; and often the larger or greater the better.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.