True to its name, the smooth-sided toad is one of the few toads with smooth skin. It lives in the tropical forests of northern South America, where it eats insects and small mammals.

Physical Description

Smooth-sided toads are a mottled brown color that blends in well with their enclosure and the forest floor. Their smooth appearance is due partly to the fact that the warty-looking toxin glands easily seen in other toads are not as obvious in these toads.


Smooth-sided toads can reach 9 inches (23 centimeters) in length.

Native Habitat

Smooth-sided toads live in northern South America in Ecuador, Colombia, Guyana, French Guiana, Suriname, Brazil and Venezuela, where they live in forests and are usually seen on the forest floor.


They may live up to ten years in human care.

Food/Eating Habits

Smooth-sided toads eat insects and small mammals. At the Zoo, the toads are fed crickets. Occasionally they receive earthworms or cockroaches. They are fed twice a week.

Sleep Habits

Smooth-sided frogs are active both day and night.

Reproduction and Development

They breed in temporary and permanent water bodies, some dug by the adults; embryonic and larval development occurs in water. Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute scientists are studying how this species breeds in the Smithsonian's National Zoo's Amazonia exhibit.

Conservation Efforts

The smooth-sided toad has a wide distribution, presumed large population, and is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.

Logging, forest conversion and clear cutting are all threats to this species. It is sensitive to changes in its habitat. However, it has a vast range and the threats to the species are generally localized. It is sometimes found in the international pet trade.

Help this Species

  • Be a smart consumer. Choose products made with sustainable ingredients, such as Smithsonian certified Bird Friendly coffees, which support farmers striving to limit their impact on wildlife and habitat.
  • Practice ecotourism by being an advocate for the environment when you’re on vacation. During your travels, support, visit or volunteer with organizations that protect wildlife. Shop smart too! Avoid buying products made from animals, which could support poaching and the illegal wildlife trade.
  • Share the story of this animal with others. Simply raising awareness about this species can contribute to its overall protection.

Animal News

An Update on African Lion Shera

June 21, 2024

Five Fascinating Facts About Coral

June 08, 2024

Meet Our Pygmy Slow Loris Babies

June 07, 2024