Originally published Monday, July 9, 2018 at 05:58a.m.

This red-spotted toad was discovered in a water cube filled with water lilies in Golden Valley singing out looking for a mate. The toads (Anaxyrus punctatus, formerly Bufo punctatus) are from the family Bufonidae found in the southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico. They are nocturnal and their mating sounds can be heard during the early evening and morning hours. They primarily live along rocky streams and riverbeds, often in arid or semi-arid regions. Their eggs hatch in three days and the tadpole can transform in six to eight weeks, taking advantage of the ephemeral water bodies. These small toads, that can get up to three inches in diameter, spend dry periods in burrows or beneath rocks or moist plant matter, and becomes suddenly active during rainfall when multitudes of them emerge. These small amphibians seem to be able to seek out water cubes or anything that holds water. (Photo by Chris Marie, wife of Butch Meriwether)