Difference Between Reptiles and Amphibians

Vertebrate animals are a subphylum or division of the animal kingdom that includes all those animals that have a bony skeleton, internal bones that may well be cartilaginous. They are concentrated in five groups that are mammals, birds, fish, reptiles and amphibians. Each group has its own well-differentiated characteristics in such a way that they differ from each other. However, both amphibians and reptiles have many similarities, so they often tend to be confused.

In this article, the definitions of reptiles and amphibians will be pointed out, as well as their most important characteristics to determine their differences accordingly.


The word reptile comes from the word -reptile- which means to drag or slide From there it is derived that the animals of this group have short or weak legs and some species have no legs. The main characteristic of reptiles is that they are cold-blooded animals. Reptiles essentially live on land, although some species like crocodiles can spend a lot of time in the water, however, they do not live in water.

Reptiles are oviparous animals, they lay their eggs (hard-shelled) on the ground or keep them in their bodies until hatching, the young are usually the same as the adults and do not undergo metamorphosis, in addition, the fertilization of reptiles is internal.

In the same way, among other characteristics of reptiles, we can say that they have dry and scaly skin, their breathing is purely pulmonary and they are mostly carnivores.

For example : Crocodiles, turtles and snakes (snakes) are reptiles.


Amphibians are vertebrate animals that live both on land and in water. Most amphibian species have larger and stronger hind legs than the front ones, since this favors their locomotion in the water, they are also cold-blooded animals.

Amphibians are ovuliparous animals, which means that they have fertilization and embryonic development outside the female’s body, it should be noted that this process takes place in water. In this type of reproduction, both the male and the female discharge their sexual cells into the water, where the embryos are formed inside a soft-shelled egg and undergo a process of metamorphosis since the embryo emerges, it becomes a larva and then in adult.

Amphibians have bare skin, provided with glands that keep it moist and thus prevent dehydration when they are out of the water. Amphibians have gill, cutaneous and pulmonary respiration, additionally, they do not have teeth and most amphibians are insectivorous.

For example : salamanders, newts, frogs and toads are amphibians.

Once the definitions of the terms that concern us have been indicated, we present a comparative table where the basic differences between reptiles and amphibians are indicated:

reptiles amphibians
They lay eggs with a hard, waterproof shell. They lay soft eggs.
They have scaly and dry skin. They have moist skin.
His breathing is pulmonary. Their respiration is gill, lung and skin.
They do not undergo metamorphosis. They undergo metamorphosis.
The fertilization process is internal. The fertilization process is external.
They have teeth. They do not have teeth.
They are mostly carnivorous. They are insectivores.

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