Toad Crossing – Road Closures at Halcyon Lake

Mount Auburn Cemetery May 24, 2024 Plants & Wildlife
The roads around Halcyon Lake may be closed during American Toad Migration.

American Toads lay their fertilized eggs in water, where they hatch into tadpoles and metamorphose into toadlets before developing into adult toads. These amphibians need a safe, undisturbed body of water to lay their eggs in. In the late spring thousands of metamorphized toadlets emerge from Halcyon Lake and begin their journey fanning out into the landscape to grow and spend their adult lives, reaching breeding age in two to three years.

Under the direction of herpetologist Joe Martinez, Mount Auburn has worked over the past decade to reintroduce native aquatic amphibians missing from the Cemetery. We have successfully reintroduced breeding populations of four native amphibians at Mount Auburn – American toad, Spring peeper, Gray treefrog and Eastern red-backed salamander. Existing Amphibian populations include Spotted Salamander, Green Frogs and American Bullfrog. The American Toad has been a success story of reintroduction in parallel with Mount Auburn’s efforts to enhance wildlife habitat.

American Toad by Andrew Rotch

Ultimately, the task of preserving the Earth’s current biodiversity will depend most on the degree to which people value that diversity.

-Joe Martinez, consulting herpetologist