Crucifix Toad or Holy Cross Frog

Saturday, Apr 19, 2014 at 00:37

Kilcowera Station Stay

The Cruxifix Toad (Notaden bennetti), commonly referred to as the Holy Cross Frog or Cruxifix Frog is an Australian native burrowing toad.
As you can see they are bright yellow with dots on their back in the shape of a cross. The dots all look like Aboriginal dot paintings and they are in black, white and yellow - a very pretty little frog.
After a suitable rainfall event they come up from two to three metres underground and go straight into calling and find a mate and spawn - their whole life-cycle really only lasts six to eight weeks. You've got like a really rich soup in and around the water at that time - so there's lots of mosquito larvae, beetles and bugs and all that sort of stuff for these tadpoles and small frogs to feed on.
One of the amazing things with these burrowing frogs is that when things are getting tough again (hot and dry), they burrow down into the remaining moist soil and they produce a cocoon around their body - almost like wrapping yourself up in plastic wrap. It insulates the body - so they go into dormancy and this can be for many years.
When the next rain comes and percolates down through the soil up they come again!
These toads are also in demand because of the toad's sticky secretion that's being researched for potential use in human medicine. And we have them right here – right now.
Kilcowera Station Stay
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