Did You Know? Incredible Natterjack Toad Facts

Natterjack toads prefer to to live in sand dunes.

A natterjack toad is one of the rarest amphibians in British wildlife. These natterjacks are mostly kept under amphibian and reptile conservation as their population is declining. The Surrey and Hampshire reptile rescue are one of the organizations doing this. These natterjack toads are now found in selected parts of England and Scotland. They are also found in small numbers at some sites in south-west Ireland, sand dunes in East Anglia, and Solway Firth. These rare amphibians are very interesting species of amphibians. As per the Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust, the conservation status of natterjack toads is 'least concern'.  Over the years, they have adapted to living on coastal grasslands, lowland heaths, and sandy heaths.

These creatures make a loud rasping noise and this is the reason that they are known as 'natternjacks'. They also have a yellow stripe down their back and have short legs. So, if you are looking for some interesting natterjack toads facts, then you are at the right place. After this, you may also like to look at these sand lizard facts and spadefoot toad facts.

Natterjack Toad

Fact File

What do they prey on?

Small animals and insects such as worms, spiders, snails, young frogs

What do they eat?


Average litter size?

7500 eggs

How much do they weigh?

4-19 g

How long are they?

60-70 mm

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Olive green

Skin Type

Leathery, permeable skin

What are their main threats?

Humans, habitat loss, snakes

What is their conservation status?

Least Concern

Where you'll find them

Sand dunes, heath and marshes


England and Scotland





Scientific Name

Natterjack toad Epidalea calamita


True Toad



Natterjack Toad Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a natterjack toad?

A natterjack toad is an amphibian. It is also known as Bufo calamita. They are olive green in color and have yellow stripes on their back. These toads are also known for their long-term hibernation period which extends from October till April. In the month of April, their breeding season begins and can be easily spotted in the ponds.

What class of animal does a natterjack toad belong to?

A natterjack toad belongs to the amphibian class of animals. It is regarded as an important part of the British wildlife and is amongst the rarest amphibians in the region.

How many natterjack toads are there in the world?

A natterjack toad is the rarest amphibian found in Scotland and England. There are thousands of natterjack toads, and the exact number for the natterjack toad population is unknown.

Where does a natterjack toad live?

Natterjack toads are found in Scotland and England's coastal regions such as north-west and south-east England, North Wales, East Anglia, some parts of Scotland, and a few areas in southern Ireland.

What is a Natterjack Toad's habitat?

This rare amphibian in British wildlife resides in sand dunes, sandy heaths, and marshes in various regions across England, Ireland, and Scotland.

Who do natterjack toads live with?

Toads generally live alone, but in the mating season, they look for a mating companion.

How long does a natterjack toad live?

15 years is the average lifespan of a natterjack toad. The natterjack is considered to be the rarest amphibian species in British wildlife, but their population is not a cause of concern.

How do they reproduce?

A natterjack toad's mating process begins as it develops a bond with a female toad. The breeding season of the natterjack toad is from April to July. The male toad tries to attract another female toad in the pond, and then they mate with each other. A female toad lays two eggs as the spawn strings, and these eggs often form a single row within each string. The tadpoles of a natterjack toad are small and black.

What is their conservation status?

The natterjack toad's conservation status is of the least concern. But the population of these toads is declining. The reason for this decline is habitat loss and global warming.

Natterjack Toad Fun facts

Seeing a natterjack toad running is an absolute delight. These toads are not like any ordinary wildlife. These toads do not hop or jump; they run! Interesting, isn’t it? And the following fun facts will make these rarest amphibians of British wildlife sound even more interesting.

What do natterjack toads look like?

Compared to the common toad, natterjacks look more olive green in color. The natterjack toads have a yellow stripe on their back. These toads do not appear to hop or jump, instead, they look more like running toads with their short legs.

The natterjack toad is one of the rarest species in toad/tadpoles.

How cute are they?

A natterjack toad is not a very cute type of toad. Toads such as glass frogs are very cute in appearance, but the natterjack toad does not have such an appealing appearance.

How do they communicate?

Toads can communicate by creating sounds. A toad has similar vocal cords to that of a human, with a vocal sac that works as an inflatable amplifier. To make a sound or call, they breathe in and close their nostrils. This forces the air back and forth between the lungs and the vocal sacs, so the vocal cords are capable of vibrating the air, and in this manner, they can generate sound.

How big is a Natterjack Toad?

A natterjack toad is not a very big toad, and is smaller than a common toad.

How fast can a natterjack toad move?

A natterjack toad is faster than a common toad. These toads have shorter legs, and that's why they are pretty quick on land. They do not look like they are hopping or jumping, but instead look like running toads.

How much does a natterjack toad weigh?

A natterjack toad is not an enormous toad; the average weight of a natterjack toad is between 4-19 g.

What are their male and female names of the species?

No unique name is assigned for these species. They are simply referred to as 'male toad' and 'female toad'.

What would you call a baby natterjack toad?

Baby natterjack toads are known as 'tadpoles'.

What do they eat?

Natterjack tadpoles eat small animals and insects such as worms, spiders, snails, young frogs. They usually prey on any animal which they find to be within their preying limit.

Are they poisonous?

Yes, natterjack toads have poisonous glands on their yellow dorsal. And because of these poisonous glands, they are the least preyed on amphibians.

Would they make a good pet?

These toads are poisonous, so these toads are not the ideal pet for everyone. These toads, if kept as a pet, are required to be handled carefully because of their poisonous skin. Keeping a natterjack toad as a pet is not possible as the toad population is decreasing heavily, and keeping, capturing, and disturbing them is not allowed.

Did you know...

The natterjack toads are awful swimmers. These toads can't swim in deep water, and they can easily drown.

Because of the heavy decline in their population these toads are protected under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

The Natterjack Toad VS. The Common Toad

A natterjack toad appears to be similar to a common toad. But these two species have a lot of differences between them. The most fundamental difference between these two toads is that a common toad is slightly bigger than a natterjack toad. Both of these toads are a bit different in their body color. A natterjack toad is dark olive green in color, has a yellow line on its back, and can also darken or lighten its skin color for camouflage. While, on the other hand, common toads are more varied in colors such as grey, dark brown, terracotta, and olive green.

Natterjack toads are awful swimmers, while common toads are good at swimming.

A common toad can be found in the garden, parks, and woods, while a natterjack toad can only be found in the coastal region of England and Scotland.

A common toad calls only in the night, while the natterjacks start calling before the sunset. A natterjack toad is louder than the common toad. These are some of the major differences between a common toad and a natterjack toad.

Is The Natterjack Toad Endangered?

The natterjacks are now at threat of being endangered. The populations of these toads have declined heavily in past years. These toads are now found in only a few parts of Scotland and England. The major reason behind this decline is habitat loss and global warming.

Habitat loss has left these toads with no place to live. And global warming has made them unable to lay eggs. Because of global warming, the sea level is rising, and the water is becoming salty. This salty water creates a problem because these toads can only lay eggs in freshwater, and lack of freshwater has reduced their birth rate. This is why their population has faced a major decline.

These toads are now being protected under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other amphibians including common toad, or marine toad.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our Natterjack Toad coloring pages.



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