Toads often appear in large, complex patterns because of their ability to eat things. Additionally, toads are useful as building blocks for constructing large oscillators with periods that are a multiple of two because of the various ways in which they can be hassled.
A toad flipper is a hassler that works by having two dominosparkers (pentadecathlons in the example shown above) apply their sparks to the toad in order to flip it over. When the sparks are applied again, the toad is flipped back. Either or both domino sparkers can be moved down two cells from the position shown and the toad flipper will still work, but because of symmetry there are really only two different types of toad flippers. For another example of a toad flipper, see 186P24 and the period-4 turning toadswick. There are also other period-2 oscillators with a similar segment that can be flipped.
A toad sucker is a toad hassler that works by having two domino sparkers (pentadecathlons in the example shown above) apply their sparks to the toad in order to shift it. When the sparks are applied again, the toad is shifted back. Either or both domino sparkers can be moved down two cells from the position shown and the toad sucker will still work, but because of symmetry there are really only three different types of toad suckers. A p4 example is shown in the "subsequent improvement of the p44 gun" as a sparker in the p44 pi-heptomino hassler article.
These toad-hassling mechanisms were featured interchangeably in the first known period-36, 48 and 58 oscillators.
Additionally, moving toad suckers have been created that use the domino sparks from two parallel spaceships to escort a toad, where the spaceships move one cell in an even period. It is also possible to shift and flip a toad simultaneously using one domino spark whose formation relies on the toad; in this case the two escorting spaceships move two cells in a period.
Toads can be used as an induction coil where the number of cells in the row alternates between two numbers one apart. An example in Dean Hickerson's oscillator collection, where the row alternates between 5 and 6 cells, can be seen above to the left.
A second use is suppressing a line of four where a block would get destroyed, a recent example of which is shown to the right. The two outer cells in the line of four survive in the next generation, interfering the constant 2-cell surface of a block but not the 1-cell edge of the toad in banana spark phase. Blocked p4-5 is another example of this type.
A 3-glider synthesis of toad can be made by suppressing extraneous junk with another glider from the two-glider octomino after dropping the toad. Coincidentally, one of the octomino-making gliders is on the same lane as a glider reflected by a toad at the same location. Other 3-glider recipes of a toad are also known.