Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Our Pet Toad

     We had so much fun with the toad Anna caught several weeks ago, that I decided that the next time we caught a toad, we would keep it.
     Well, yesterday Anna caught another toad.  After spending the night in a make shift terrarium, Dave went out this morning and got a 10 gallon terrarium from the pet shop, making it official that this toad is now our permanent pet. 
     American toads are considered a good beginner amphibian to own, since they are pretty low maintenance.  All they need is a terrarium, (minimum of 10 Gal for one toad)   an appropriate substrait, part of which is at least 3" deep, a place to hide, and a shallow water dish that they can soak in.  Toads do not drink; they sit in water and absorb it through their skin. 
      I chose peat moss mixed with topsoil for my substrait; I wanted it to be close to what he was used to in the wild.  His toad home, I made from a gourd, and his water dish is mussel shell.  I think I will have to get something bigger, but it will do for now. 
As soon as I put him in the terrarium, he hopped into his little gourd house, and walked around in it some, then he hopped out, and started checking out the other stuff in his new home.  He seemed like he was adjusting so well, that I went ahead and put in the food I had caught for him earlier.  He gobbled up the three crickets almost immediately, but I think the little grasshoppers were too big.  He was very interested in them, though.  He also managed to catch several ants that were crawling on a branch I had put in.  I'm glad he's eating so well, as I think that's a sign he likes his new home. 
     Right now he is just hanging out in the gourd house.  He has now been named, Algernon, but we'll call him Algie for short.  I love toads, and I have to admit, this pet is probably more for me than the kids, but they enjoy having him too. 
    I would love to figure out how to get a good picture without the reflection on the glass getting in the way, but these will do for now.   Isn't he cute?  As for the "he" part, I had decided to just call it a boy, regardless of what gender it might be, since I certainly couldn't tell, but earlier he was puffing out his throat, so that means he's really a boy, right?

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