A disconcerting and graphic image of a "rolled-up" toad has surfaced on Twitter, no doubt the work of a deadly predator.
Jan Freedman, a natural curator of history at a museum in Plymouth, England, was walking with his family when his eight-year-old son discovered the torn toad, according to Live Science.
"Sorry for the rough picture," Freedman wrote in his tweet. "This was a toad ̵
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In a conversation with the news agency, Freedman said he could call the mutilated remains a common toad identify because "the head was the only part that was not turned inside out."
"We saw many toads in our garden and elsewhere on Dartmoor, but nothing like that," he continued.
After raising the question of what this might have done to the poor amphibian, the answers rolled in. Some called crows, others suggested herons, but "it seems to be the work of an otter," Freedman tweeted.
It is well known that European otters have deprived the toads of their skin, says Amy Schwartz, a researcher and doctoral student at the School of Biosciences at Cardiff University, UK, who spoke with Live Science.
Otte rs, who eat mainly fish, are known to eat toads in the spring. Schwartz suspected that the treacherous act might have been the work of an otter after seeing a series of toadstalks in a pond in Pembrokeshire.
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