Amietophrynus garmani (Meek, 1897)
Original Published Description:
Garman's Toad (English), Olive Toad (English), Northern Mottled Toad (English), Light-nosed Toad (English), Garman's Square-marked Toad (English), Garman's Square-backed Toad (English), Eastern Olive Toad (English)
A. garmani has a wide distribution in the eastern savannas of Africa, ranging from Somalia in the north to South Africa in the south (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
A large toad with long, distinct parotid glands. The dorsum is warty and light brown with paired, regular darker square patches. Some of the markings may have a reddish tinge. The tympanum is visible. Toes are webbed only slightly at the base (Text from Harper et al., 2010).
Males measure 63-72 mm and females 55-74 mm in snout-vent length (Harper et al., 2010).
A. garmani is difficult to distigush from the morphologically similar B. poweri. Using their calls can be key determining the species. Channing (1991) states that A. garmani’s call is a relatively slower pulse with a shorter duration then that of B. poweri (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
A. garmani can be confused with A. maculatus, A. xeros and A. gutturalis. Juveniles of all members of this genus are difficult to distinguish. A. garmani lacks the light cross on the head or light band between the eyes that is typically seen in A. maculatus, and A. xeros. A. garmani also lacks dark markings on the snout in contrast to many other Amietophrynus species (Text from Harper et al., 2010).
Habitat and Ecology
A. garmani inhabits various bushveld vegetation types in the Savanna Biome and seems to prefer well-wooded, low-lying areas with high daytime temperatures (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
This species is found in savannas, grasslands and agricultural areas up to 2000 m (Harper et al., 2010).
Predators include Serrated Hinged Terrapin Pelusios sinuatus, Müller’s Platanna Xenopus muelleri, as well the eggs are eaten by the A. garmani tadpoles. Other predators include small carnivores such as young crocodiles, snakes and birds (Channing 2001). A. garmani prey on beetles, termites, moths, insect larvae and other small invertebrates (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
Lambiris (1989a) notes that breeding can takes place in spring and summer, although if there are artificial water bodies such as garden ponds it can take place easlier. Generally breeding occurs in small, shallow, temporary pools, or along slow-flowing streams (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
Females lay copious black eggs in long strings during the onset of short rains in November. Males can be found calling from the water edge at night and hidden areas during the day (Text from Harper et al., 2010).
Call-site fidelity is present in this species. It has been proven that even when the males have been removed and released at great distance from the site they will return to their original call sites. The call sites are found at the edges of water bodies; often males form small choruses (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
The call is described by Channing and Howell (2006) as “a loud ‘kwaak’.”
Du Preez (1996) found that the eggs hatch within 24 hours, and metamorphosis takes place after 64 days (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
Channing (2001) observed that tadpoles assume a lighter or darker colouring to match the substrate (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
IUCN Red List Category and Justification of Conservation Status
A. garmani has a Least Concern status, it is widespread and it is possible that its range has been expanding as a result of the construction of watering holes for livestock (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).
- Bufo garmani Meek, 1897 (synonym)
- Bufo regularis humbensis Monard, 1937 (synonym)
- Bufo pseudogarmani Hulselmans, 1969 (synonym)
- Bufo garmani pseudogarmani — Mertens, 1971 (synonym)
- Bufo garmani garmani — Mertens, 1971 (synonym)
- Bufo bisidanae Hulselmans, 1977 (synonym)
- Amietophrynus garmani — Frost, Grant, Faivovich, Bain, Haas, Haddad, de Sá, Channing, Wilkinson, Donnellan, Raxworthy, Campbell, Blotto, Moler, Drewes, Nussbaum, Lynch, Green, and Wheeler, 2006 (synonym)