All toads are frogs, but not all frogs are toads. While most frogs have moist, smooth skin and long legs for leaping, typical toads have dry, warty
skin and short legs for hopping. Despite common belief, touching toads does not result in warts; only viruses cause warts. But when toads are handled with any pressure, toxins may ooze from their skin as a defense mechanism. This liquid sometimes causes mild irritation, especially if you rub your eyes or mouth after holding a toad. For this reason, either leave toads alone or be sure to wash your hands after handling them.
WILD Facts is a regular feature written by Linda May, a wildlife interpretive specialist with the Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division.