Amphibians

Take a leap
into the
world of
amphibians

What Makes an AmphibianA cold-blooded animal that lives both on land and in water and is able to breathe through its skin as well as, or instead of, through its lungs. Frogs and salamanders are amphibians.?

 

Amphibians are animals that live part of their lives in water and part on land.  They usually have soft, moist skin that is protected by a slippery layer of mucus. They also tend to live in moist places or near water to keep their bodies from drying out. There are three main groups of amphibians: caecilians; salamanders, newts, and mudpuppies; and frogs and toads.

 

All amphibians:
  • Are vertebrates (which means they have a backboneThe column of bones (spine) in the back of many animals. It supports the body. An animal with a backbone is called a vertebrate. or spineA stiff, sharp projection on an animal; another word for quill.)
  • Are ectothermic. Also known as “cold-bloodedAn animal whose body temperature changes with the temperature of the air or water around it, as a turtle or fish.,” ectothermic animals cannot regulate their own body heat, so they depend on warmth from sunlight to become warm and active. If they get too hot, they have to find shade or a burrowNoun-A hole in the ground made by certain animals, like rabbits. Verb-To dig a hole in the ground. to help them cool down.
  • Breathe through their skin.
  • Go through metamorphosisThe changes in shape and abilities that certain animals go through as they grow from young animals to adults. Caterpillars become butterflies through metamorphosis.. Young amphibians hatch from eggs, but do not look like their parents. As they develop, their body shape changes.