Portal:Amphibians

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The Amphibian Portal

Many amphibians—like this Ceratophrys cranwelli—exhibit biofluorescence.

Amphibians are ectothermic, tetrapod vertebrates of the class Amphibia. All living amphibians belong to the group Lissamphibia. They inhabit a wide variety of habitats, with most species living within terrestrial, fossorial, arboreal or freshwater aquatic ecosystems. Thus amphibians typically start out as larvae living in water, but some species have developed behavioural adaptations to bypass this.

The young generally undergo metamorphosis from larva with gills to an adult air-breathing form with lungs. Amphibians use their skin as a secondary respiratory surface and some small terrestrial salamanders and frogs lack lungs and rely entirely on their skin. They are superficially similar to reptiles like lizards but, along with mammals and birds, reptiles are amniotes and do not require water bodies in which to breed. With their complex reproductive needs and permeable skins, amphibians are often ecological indicators; in recent decades there has been a dramatic decline in amphibian populations for many species around the globe.

The earliest amphibians evolved in the Devonian period from sarcopterygian fish with lungs and bony-limbed fins, features that were helpful in adapting to dry land. They diversified and became dominant during the Carboniferous and Permian periods, but were later displaced by reptiles and other vertebrates. The origin of modern amphibians belonging to Lissamphibia, which first appeared during the Early Triassic, around 250 million years ago, has long been contentious. However the emerging consensus is that they likely originated from temnospondyls, the most diverse group of prehistoric amphibians, during the Permian period. (Full article...)

Selected frog article

Batrachylidae is a family of frogs from southern South America (Argentina and Chile). Before being recognized as a family, Batrachylidae was included as a subfamily (Batrachylinae) in the family Ceratophryidae; this is the taxonomy still suggested by the Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS). (Full article...)
List of selected frog articles

Selected salamander article

Fossil of Karaurus sharovi a caudatan from the Middle-Late Jurassic belonging to the family Karauridae

The Caudata are a group of amphibians containing the salamanders (Urodela) and all extinct species of salamander-like amphibians more closely related to salamanders than to frogs. They are typically characterized by a superficially lizard-like appearance, with slender bodies, blunt snouts, short limbs projecting at right angles to the body, and the presence of a tail in both larvae and adults.

Disagreement exists between different authorities as to the definition of the terms "Caudata" and "Urodela". Some maintain that Urodela should be restricted to the crown group, with Caudata being used for the total group. Others restrict the name Caudata to the crown group and use Urodela for the total group. The former approach seems to be most widely adopted and is used in this article. (Full article...)

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Restoration of Batropetes

Selected amphibian type

European fire-bellied toad (Bombina bombina)

Toad is a common name for certain frogs, especially of the family Bufonidae, that are characterized by dry, leathery skin, short legs, and large bumps covering the parotoid glands.

A distinction between frogs and toads is not made in scientific taxonomy, but is common in popular culture (folk taxonomy), in which toads are associated with drier, rougher skin and more terrestrial habitats.

In scientific taxonomy, toads include the true toad and various false toads including Ansonia malayana and Telmatobufo. (Full article...)
List of selected amphibian type articles

Selected images

Selected toad article

Bufo viridis sc.JPG
The European green toad (Bufotes viridis) is a species of toad found in steppes, mountainous areas, semi-deserts, urban areas and other habitats in mainland Europe, ranging from far eastern France and Denmark to the Balkans and Western Russia. As historically defined, the species ranged east through the Middle East and Central Asia to western China, Mongolia and northwestern India, and south through Italy and the Mediterranean islands to North Africa. Following genetic and morphological reviews, 14 population (all largely or entirely Asian, except for the African and Balearic green toads) are now regarded as separate species. These species and the European green toad are placed in their own genus Bufotes, but they were included in Bufo. (Full article...)
List of selected toad articles

Selected caecilian article

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