Our native frog looks a lot like Queensland cane toad

Western Local Land Services senior land services officer Brian Dohnt was able to put a
resident’s fears to rest last week when he identified the amphibian in her back yard as an
Eastern Banjo Frog and not a cane toad that she was worried it could be.

A frog that looked very much like a cane
toad was caught in a local’s backyard last
week and handed into the Western Local
Land Services (Western LLS) Cobar office.
Western LLS senior land services officer
Brian Dohnt took delivery of the suspect amphibian
on Thursday and had the job of determining
if it was a cane toad (which is poisonous
and classified as a pest).
Mr Dohnt said while it did look a lot like a
cane toad, it was however an Eastern Banjo
Frog which is native to the area.
Like cane toads, Banjo Frogs can be quite
warty but while the toad is dry, Banjo Frogs
are moist.
“The concern is that people think they are
cane toads because of the size of them and
how they sit up like a toad,” Mr Dohnt said.
By frog standards Banjo Frogs are large (up
to 8cm) but cane toads are much larger – up
to 15cm.
“We do not want people to be killing them
because they are a native frog,” Mr Dohnt
“If any landholders have got any concerns
and they see a frog (or toad) and catch it, they
can bring it in to us and we can identify it.”
Mr Dohnt said a cane toad has previously
been found in Cobar.
He said about four or five years ago it was
found that a cane toad had hitched a ride on a
golf buggy trailer brought to Cobar from
“It was a neighbour who heard it and correctly
identified that it was a cane toad,” Mr
Dohnt said.
While the woman had been able to photograph
the cane toad in her neighbour’s yard,
she wasn’t however able to capture it. She did
however report it to Mr Dohnt.
“It was a bio security matter, and we went
through months and months of rigmarole and
tried to catch it but we never found it,” Mr
Dohnt said.
He didn’t however think the toad would
have survived for very long as it gets too cold
in Cobar for toads and they can’t tolerate
Mr Dohnt encourages locals to continue to
keep a lookout for toads because if any native
animals like goannas and snakes eat them, it
will kill them.
He encourages anyone who finds a Banjo
Frog to return it to their garden as native
frogs play a central role in keeping the balance
in our ecosystem, particularly in helping
to control the insect population.