In the UK, as teams of volunteers studied bats and dormice in trees, as part of the Bat Tree Habitat Key project and the National Dormouse Monitoring Programme, a surprise awaited them: toads that had found refuge in height, inside nesting boxes and in tree cavities. The discovery is the subject of a study by researchers from the University of Cambridge and the organization Froglife, published on July 6 in the journal PLOS One. The arboreal behavior of terrestrial amphibians is a poorly documented phenomenon in Europe, report the authors of the study. Of the hundreds of sites scoured by volunteers, sixty-five amphibians were found. Most were common toads. They were perched up to three meters high. What interest do they have in climbing so high? The mystery persists. The researchers suggest that the toads could seek to feed on invertebrates or take refuge there to protect themselves from parasites and predators.

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