Great Plains Toad (Anaxyrus cognatus)


  • Size: ~3/4 iinch (metamorph) to ~5 inches (adult)
  • Dorsal color: tan to brown or olive
  • Oftentimes symmetrical large greenish-black blotches surrounded by pale rings
  • Dorsum covered with small warts
  • Ventral color: cream or white with no spots
  • V-shaped cranial crests that join to form a lump (boss) above the snout (may be absent or weak in juveniles; see below for an image)GreatPlainsToad_CranialCrest-WGFD.png
  • Mp3 of call (courtesy of Gary Nafis,; contact Gary for permission to post on other websites)

Photo by Wyoming Natural Diversity Database; Sketch by Wyoming Game and Fish Department

Eggs & Tadpoles

  • Eggs in strings; outer jelly of string is scalloped, making eggs look like beads on a string
  • Uniformly dark black tadpoles with anal vent on midline
  • Tadpole eyes are medial


Breeding Habitat

Lower elevation temporary pools, ponds and potholes, but occasionally permanent ponds and backwater or pooled areas of streams.


Photo by Wyoming Natural Diversity Database


Native Range


Map by Wyoming Natural Diversity Database