(Toledo, OH) While cutting the lawn this afternoon I saw a brown blur dart past my feet. My first thought was that I had disturbed a mouse, but upon closer inspection I found that my lawn maintenance efforts were bothersome to a small toad.
It took some time before the creature would sit still long enough to get a good photograph. Out of 30 shots only a few were worth saving, and this is the pick of the proverbial litter in my attempts to document the American toad, Bufo americanus.
I played with the hue and brightness a bit to compensate for the midday sun, which obscured the toad's colors. I also splashed him with a little water to make the creature more vivid; between his hopping and the bright sun I wound up with many blurry shots.
I made sure to wash my hands after the amphibian photo shoot, not because I buy into any urban legends about warts, but because the irritated animal doused me with toad urine.
Note: no animals were harmed in the production of this blog post.