Hurter’s Spadefoot

Hurter's Spadefoot

Copyright Gary Nafis

Genus Species: Scaphiopus hurterii

Size: 1¾ - 3¼”

Location: Found mostly on the Coastal Plain and River Valley with some sightings located in north central Arkansas.

Advertisement Call: “Baa” as in Ant, nasal, rising at end



This toad is very similar to the Eastern Spadefoot, so refer to that description.  The color of Hurter’s can vary from greenish-brown to almost black.  This spadefoot remains in a deep burrow most of the time except for its explosive mating period.  It digs into its burrow with its back legs.  He is named in honor of naturalist and past curator of the St. Louis Academy of Sciences, Julius Hurter (1870-1940).

Interesting Fact: Spadefoot larvae are particularly noted for cannibalistic behavior.  If their temporary pools evaporate too quickly, the tadpoles will become carnivores.

Hurter’s Spadefoot is a member of the Scaphiopodidae (North American Spadefoots) family and is a Middle Frog (Mesobatrachia).

Click for more about Hurter’s Spadefoot at Herps of Arkansas.