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Old 01-21-2008, 07:10 AM
 
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The thread about roadrunner sightings got me to thinking about another one. To wit, when was the last time any of y'all have seen a Texas Horned Toad? Commonly (or at least it was back when I was growing up) a "horny toad"?

When I was a kid, in the 60's, they seemed to be all over the place. But I couldn't say the last time I saw one.

Sad. Another passing of a part of the Texas I once knew...
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:29 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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Rumor has it that the fire ants did 'em in, but I don't know for sure. They are still around in some parts of NW texas (Lubbock on toward Amarillo). I believe it is a misdemenor to bother them in any way, shape, or form.....
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Where I live.
9,191 posts, read 18,496,106 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasReb View Post
The thread about roadrunner sightings got me to thinking about another one. To wit, when was the last time any of y'all have seen a Texas Horned Toad? Commonly (or at least it was back when I was growing up) a "horny toad"?

When I was a kid, in the 60's, they seemed to be all over the place. But I couldn't say the last time I saw one.

Sad. Another passing of a part of the Texas I once knew...
They are now a protected species...and not that common any more. I'd see them occasionally out in the pasture/country in West Texas. Fireants did contribute greatly to their scarcity by being an enemy of the horned toad's main food source, the big red harvester ants.

I hate fireants for a LOT of reasons, and this is not the least of them.
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Old 01-21-2008, 10:11 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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Quote:
Fireants did contribute greatly to their scarcity by being an enemy of the horned toad's main food source, the big red harvester ants.
Ah! I remember now, that is what I had heard, too. The big red ones, and even the big black ants. Those guys were huge and quite common when I was a kid...they must have been about a half inch long. They had the big flat 'mound' with little trails heading out in all directions. You could let them crawl around on your hand, and they would not bite...
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Old 01-21-2008, 11:09 AM
 
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Just a little addition that we may all disagree on as concerns the ants! LOL

As I understand it, fire ants are not to be confused with what a lot of Texans grew up calling "red ants"...which are, as y'all say, "harvester ants." True fire ants are actually fairly small black things. And they swarm like crazy when their mounds are disturbed...otherwise, most don't even notice them.
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Old 01-21-2008, 03:09 PM
 
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Horn Toads, Red Ants, Guess The Fire Ants Ate Them All. We Used To Have An Abundance Of Horned Toads On The Ranch. Also The Red Ants, Man Could They Put A Hurt On You. Although, I Would Rather Have Them Back Then Living With The Fire Ants.
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Old 01-21-2008, 07:08 PM
 
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I have seen a lot of horny toads in the past few years. I saw one most recently in front of G.W. Bush's childhood home when visiting Midland, it was trying to get up the curb but couldn't so I helped it up but screamed the whole time, prolly scared the poor thing. They do eat the harvester ants so don't kill them, they will leave you alone if you stay out of their paths and don't mess with their colonies.
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Old 01-21-2008, 07:45 PM
 
Location: Where I live.
9,191 posts, read 18,496,106 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasReb View Post
Just a little addition that we may all disagree on as concerns the ants! LOL

As I understand it, fire ants are not to be confused with what a lot of Texans grew up calling "red ants"...which are, as y'all say, "harvester ants." True fire ants are actually fairly small black things. And they swarm like crazy when their mounds are disturbed...otherwise, most don't even notice them.
The fireants we had in Midland were actually red and black.....tiny, with sandy, sometimes tall mounds...and a bite like no other. I have never had a sting hurt that badly....leaving red welts that you could squeeze pus out of the next day...and that itched like crazy when healing. They are vicious and aggressive....they get into electrical items (such as AC compressors), sting baby animals mercilessly.....I don't know how we ever got so unlucky with an imported pest species such as these. I cannot imagine anyone not noticing them if you had mounds in your yard. Step in one...you'd better run like h***.

The big red harvester ants can sting, but they are not aggressive...and the stings don't hurt very much or very long.

Yep, two completely different insects...one native and the other an invasive exotic.
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Old 01-21-2008, 07:48 PM
 
Location: Where I live.
9,191 posts, read 18,496,106 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trainwreck20 View Post
Ah! I remember now, that is what I had heard, too. The big red ones, and even the big black ants. Those guys were huge and quite common when I was a kid...they must have been about a half inch long. They had the big flat 'mound' with little trails heading out in all directions. You could let them crawl around on your hand, and they would not bite...
I did get stung a number of times by the big red ones...and they don't hurt that much.

Black ones? We didn't have those in West Texas that I recall.
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Old 01-22-2008, 12:49 PM
 
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Nope, the fire ants haven't made it to West Texas yet....at least not to the Panhandle. That's one thing we didn't miss while living there for a few years.

Anybody remember RIP, the horny toad they found in the time capsule of the cornstone of the courthouse at Eastland TX..... They made a little ceramic replica of him and used to sell them as a sovenier of Eastland.....they may still.
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