A reptile is an air-breathing, cold-blooded, vertebrate, animal having covered of horny scales, or scutes. Reptiles make up the class of Reptilia. The class includes more than 5,000 species of turtles, lizards, snakes, and crocodiles. Because they are cold-blooded, and dependent on the environment for body warmth, reptiles are found in tropical, and temperate regions.
Reptiles were the first vertebrates to become fully land dwelling. They differ from amphibians in having no larval stage. Larval means, to have a part in your life when you are a larva. They differ from birds and mammals in having no stable body temperature and they don't have feathers or hair. Reptiles are hatched from shelled eggs or are born alive.
Reptiles vary in their feeding habits. Some are strict vegetarians, some are strict carnivores, and others are omnivorous. Crocodiles are all carnivores, but vary from broad snouted kinds like the alligator and caiman-which lives in the Amazon.
Common Iguana in tree
Amphibians are a class of vertebra animals. Also, they are creatures that live part of their life in water and the rest out of water. A few of the main amphibious creatures that are found in the Amazon are toads, frogs, and salamanders. These are just the most common. There are 3 main classes of Amphibians: 1- Apoda (caecilians) which are worm-like and have no limbs or eyes. 2- Caudata (newts and salamanders) with aquatic larvae that resemble the adults. 3- Anura (toads and frogs) with no tail or neck. They have long hind limbs, and webbed feet.
The skin of amphibians is thin and moist, although some caecillians have small scales embedded in their skin. The red-eyed tree frog is well known in the Amazon along with the caecillian, which helps the plants grow. Most amphibians are no larger than 6 inches, and weigh less than 2 ounces! Even some tree frogs never leave their tree-topped homes. Amphibians have excellent eyesight. Well, usually. This eyesight is part of their survival. It helps them catch their food of insects. Not necessarily first class dining, but it is to them!
Reptiles and amphibians are a major group of animals living in the Amazon. They are important parts of the cycle of life in the rainforest.
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