Crucifix Toad

Australian crucifix toads (Notaden bennettii) have a funny way of attracting prey: they wiggle and tap their toes. Prey like ants and termites approach the toad’s toes and are quickly snatched up for dinner. But what about other insects that might bite and sting the toad? Crucifix toads have a way of dealing with these too. When bothered, crucifix toads produce a sticky glue over their skin, driving any potential predators like snakes to look elsewhere for food. The adhesive works even in the rain and is incredibly strong, trapping any bothersome insects, which the toad can eat later when the toad sheds and eats its own skin!

Maxim D. Doucet Hall, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette, LA 70504, USA

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number 1723677. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.