These toads can kill a pet or small child. Here’s how to get rid of them.

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In 1955 a pet dealer was bringing some toads into Florida and about one hundred of them escaped, according to smithsonianmag.com. They are from South America but were introduced into several countries to keep down pests – a mistake as it turned out, as they are venomous and quickly become a dominant species.

The 2019/20 combo of wet and mild in Florida has led to thousands of these juvenile toads hatching in wet places. Summer is their mating season. This is bad news for homeowners, especially ones with pools, small children or pets. Do not let your dog anywhere near one. They squirt venom from parotid glands on their backs near the shoulders (watch in the video where the scientist squeezes this gland) and when frightened they secrete a milky liquid called bufotoxin that can cause convulsions, loss of coordination and cardiac arrest often leading to the death of a dog or cat.

According to nationalgeographic.com, the cane toad (Rhinella marina) is about four to six inches long and weighs just over two pounds. However, monster toads weighing four pounds have been found! They can be different shades of brown, tan and even grey. They live from five to ten years in the wild and have very large families with the females laying thousands of eggs.

Keep your yard free of brush, leaves, in fact anything, and fill in all holes as they appear.