Alytes


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Alytes

 

(obstetrical toads), a genus of acaudate amphibians of the family Discoglossidae. There are two species. A. obstetricans is distributed in Central Europe and the eastern part of the Iberian Peninsula. The body length reaches 5 cm. Egg laying and fertilization usually occur on dry land. The female lays two strings of eggs, each reaching a length of 1.7 m. Between 120 and 150 eggs are deposited. The male winds the strings of eggs around his hind legs and carries them for about a month, until the tadpoles hatch. The tadpoles develop further in the water, a process that sometimes lasts more than two years. The toad is nocturnal. It feeds mainly on insects. It burrows in the ground, sometimes making long passages in which it winters. A. cisternasii is found in western Spain and in Portugal.