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Class Amphibia
Order Anura
Family Scaphiopodidae


Scaphiopus/Spea—Spadefoot ToadsDistribution of fossil Scaphiopus/Spea

Spadefoot toads tend to be rather well adapted to arid and semiarid conditions and are widespread today at low to moderate elevations in the Southwest, as they were during the Quaternary. Identifications often can be made with confidence to the family level, but assignment to genus or species may not be possible with much of the material.

These toads were long assigned to the European family Pelobatidae, but relatively recently have been placed in their own family (Scaphiopodidae). Likewise, the two genera occurring in our region had been placed in a single genus, Scaphiopus, before being recognized as two separate genera. Identifications to genus made before the split into separate genera now can only be assigned to this duel classification without re-examination of the specimens. Also, many skeletal elements currently cannot be identified to genus and may end up in this category.


Rancholabrean: Cool Water Coal Gasification Solid Waste Site (Jefferson 1991a).

Wisconsin: White Lake (Harris 1993c: cf.).

Mid Wisconsin: Papago Springs Cave (Czaplewski and Mead et al. 1999); U-Bar Cave (Harris 1989).

Late Wisconsin: Harris' Pocket (Applegarth 1979); TT II (Harris 1993c); U-Bar Cave 15-18 ka (Harris 1989).

Late Wisconsin/Holocene: Balcony Room (Applegarth 1979).

Literature. Applegarth 1979; Czaplewski and Mead et al. 1999; Harris 1989, 1993c; Jefferson 1991a.


Last Update: 25 Feb 2014