Anaxyrus californicus (Camp, 1915)

Class: Amphibia > Order: Anura > Family: Bufonidae > Genus: Anaxyrus > Species: Anaxyrus californicus

Bufo cognatus californicus Camp, 1915, Univ. California Publ. Zool., 12: 331. Holotype: MVZ 4364, by original designation. Type locality: "Santa Paula, 800 feet altitude, Ventura County, California", USA.

Bufo californicusMyers, 1930, Proc. Biol. Soc. Washington, 43: 73; Frost and Hillis, 1990, Herpetologica, 46: 87-104; Collins, 1991, Herpetol. Rev., 22: 43; Collins, 1997, Herpetol. Circ., 25: 11; Gergus, 1998, Herpetologica, 54: 317-325.

Bufo compactilis californicusLinsdale, 1940, Proc. Am. Acad. Arts Sci., 73: 206.

Bufo woodhousii californicusShannon, 1949, Bull. Chicago Acad. Sci., 8: 301.

Bufo microscaphus californicusStebbins, 1951, Amph. W. North Am.: 274.

Anaxyrus californicusFrost, Grant, Faivovich, Bain, Haas, Haddad, de Sá, Channing, Wilkinson, Donnellan, Raxworthy, Campbell, Blotto, Moler, Drewes, Nussbaum, Lynch, Green, and Wheeler, 2006, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 297: 363.

Bufo (Anaxyrus) californicus — Fouquette and Dubois, 2014, Checklist N.A. Amph. Rept.: 298. See comment under Bufonidae regarding how this arrangement is part of a a system that requires widespread paraphyly. 

English Names

Arroyo Toad (Storer, 1925, Univ. California Publ. Zool., 27: 43; Slevin, 1928, Occas. Pap. California Acad. Sci., 16: 107; Conant, Cagle, Goin, Lowe, Neill, Netting, Schmidt, Shaw, Stebbins, and Bogert, 1956, Copeia, 1956: 176; Stebbins, 1966, Field Guide W. North Am. Rept. Amph.: 62; Collins, Huheey, Knight, and Smith, 1978, Herpetol. Circ., 7: 10; Liner, 1994, Herpetol. Circ., 23: 16; Collins, 1997, Herpetol. Circ., 25: 11; Crother, Boundy, Campbell, de Queiroz, Frost, Highton, Iverson, Meylan, Reeder, Seidel, Sites, Taggart, Tilley, and Wake, 2001 "2000", Herpetol. Circ., 29: 7; USFWS; Stebbins, 2003, Field Guide W. Rept. Amph., Ed. 3: 212; Frost, McDiarmid, and Mendelson, 2008, in Crother (ed.), Herpetol. Circ., 37: 3; Liner and Casas-Andreu, 2008, Herpetol. Circ., 38: 7; Collins and Taggart, 2009, Standard Common Curr. Sci. Names N. Am. Amph. Turtles Rept. Crocodil., ed. 6: 6; Frost, McDiarmid, Mendelson, and Green, 2012, in Crother (ed.), Herpetol. Circ., 39: 12; Frost, Lemmon, McDiarmid, and Mendelson, 2017, in Crother (ed.), Herpetol. Circ., 43: 7).

California Toad (Wright and Wright, 1933, Handb. Frogs Toads U.S. Canada: 54; Schmidt, 1953, Check List N. Am. Amph. Rept., Ed. 6: 65).

Mexican Arroyo Toad (Frank and Ramus, 1995, Compl. Guide Scient. Common Names Amph. Rept. World: 41).


West of the deserts in southern California (USA) near Santa Margarita in San Luis Obispo County south into northern Baja California del Norte (Mexico), south to at least as far south as Arroyo San Simón, just south of San Quintín.

Geographic Occurrence

Natural Resident: Mexico, United States of America, United States of America - California


In the Bufo americanus group of Blair, 1972, Evol. Genus Bufo: 352; by implication. Resurrected from the synonymy of Bufo microscaphus by Frost and Hillis, 1990, Herpetologica, 46: 87-104, without discussion. Gergus, 1998, Herpetologica, 54: 317-325, presented discussion and evidence for the resurrection, amplified by Gergus, Sullivan, and Malmos, 1997, Ethology, 103: 979-989. See account (as Bufo microscaphus californicus) by Price and Sullivan, 1988, Cat. Am. Amph. Rept., 415: 1-3. Grismer, 2002, Amph. Rept. Baja California: 66-68, provided an account for the Mexican population. Stebbins, 2003, Field Guide W. Rept. Amph., Ed. 3: 212-213, provided a brief account, figure, and map. Mahrdt and Lovich, 2004, Herpetol. Rev., 35: 280, provided a brief discussion of and localities of Baja California distribution. Sweet and Sullivan, 2005, in Lannoo (ed.), Amph. Declines: 396–400, provided a detailed account and map. See photograph, map, description of geographic range and habitat, and conservation status (as Bufo californicus) in Stuart, Hoffmann, Chanson, Cox, Berridge, Ramani, and Young, 2008, Threatened Amph. World: 180. Oliver-López, Woolrich-Piña, and Lemos-Espinal, 2009, Fam. Bufonidae Mex.: 26–29, provided an account for Mexico. Dodd, 2013, Frogs U.S. and Canada, 1: 65–70, provided an account that summarized relevant literature. Elliot, Gerhardt, and Davidson, 2009, Frogs and Toads of N. Am.: 180–181, provided an account, photos, and advertisement call.   

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