A Florida suburb is being plagued by thousands of poisonous toads, reports the AP. Experts say the amphibians are bufo toads, also known as cane toads. Residents in the infested Palm Beach Gardens neighborhood worry toxins secreted by the toads will harm their pets and children. News stations broadcast images of the small toads clogging pool filters, hopping en masse across driveways and sidewalks, and lurking in landscaped lawns. Bufo toads "definitely are an issue," Ethan Howell of Florida Environmental Pest Management tells WPBF. "They are poisonous and they excrete a liquid from their glands and if that is ingested by the dog it can be fatal."
Resident Jennifer Quasha told WPBF her family first noticed the toads Friday. "I just ... can’t believe it. It’s just really gross … I feel like I don’t have a backyard. I don’t have a front yard. ... We’re confined to the indoors. ... The toads are taking over." Mark Holladay of the pest removal service Toad Busters—which, yes, exists in South Florida—told WPTV that recent rains coupled with warm temperatures sent the amphibians into a breeding cycle. Holladay said even more toads are likely to spread throughout South Florida in the coming weeks. (A dog ate a bufo toad and had to get "mouth-to-snout" CPR.)