From above, the oriental fire-bellied toad seems fairly nondescript—a green toad with black spots blending nicely with the verdant colors of its habitat. It’s not until it perceives a threat that this flashy amphibian reveals its true colors.
Oriental fire-bellied toads secrete toxins from their skin, and they want potential predators to know it. When threatened, they rise up on their front legs and arch their back, sometimes even flipping themselves over completely, to reveal the bright red-and-black coloration of their underside. This behavior, known as the unken reflex, warns predators, “Eat me, and you might croak.”
One of the most common amphibians in its primary range, oriental fire-bellied toads thrive in northeastern China, Korea, southern Japan, and southern parts of Russia.