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Great Plains Toad


Illustration of the Great Plains ToadNo direct management for Great Plains Toads has been undertaken in the province of Alberta. However, an appreciation of the little-understood nature of this species in Alberta has become more widespread through increasing education and awareness.

The Great Plains Toad, at the northern extreme of its distribution, is found in localized populations over the southeastern corner of the province of Alberta. In general, the Great Plains Toad is well adapted to the widely varying environmental conditions of the prairies. Their potentially high fecundity, longevity, and ability to reproduce rapidly in appropriate conditions have likely enabled this species to survive the periodic drought conditions that have helped to shape the entire prairie ecosystem. Although previous reports have suggested provincial populations of around 1000 toads, recent discoveries in the Canadian Forces Base Suffield regions suggest the actual provincial population is much higher, perhaps more than twice the original estimate. Nonetheless, the limited distribution, relatively small population size, and loss of native habitat to cultivation are all key factors which may affect the long-term viability of Alberta populations of this species and need to be considered in management decisions.

Reprinted from Alberta Wildlife Status Report No. 14 (1998), with permission from Alberta Sustainable Resource Development.

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