8 Core Difference between Newt and Salamander with Similarities

What is the difference between newt and salamander?

The name newt and salamander have been used interchangeably. These two amphibians are not the same but people tend to think that they are the same.

They share numerous characteristics both in behavior and appearance. They both have elongated bodies and tails.

They both have exceptional regeneration abilities where they can regrow body parts that they have lost in one way or another.

The main difference between newts and salamanders is that newts are a type of salamander belonging to the sub-family Pleurodelinae of the family Salamandridae.

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Difference between Newt and Salamander

Comparison Table (Newt vs Salamander)

Characteristics Newt Salamander
Physical appearance They have brightly-colored skins. They have dull-colored skins.
Texture They are covered with warts which gives them a bumpy texture. They have smooth, moist skin.
Habitats They may live on land or in water. They purely live in water.
Number of limbs They have four limbs. They have vestigial rear limbs or no limbs at all.
Breeding They lay a clutch of 7 to 30 eggs on underwater plants. They lay up to 450 eggs in water.
Tails They have paddle-like tails that enable them to move in the water. They have round tails.
Feet They have webbed feet. They have well-developed toes for digging in the soil.
Classification A type of salamander belonging to the sub-family Pleurodelinae. It belongs to the family Salamandridae.
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What is Newt?

Newt is an amphibian which a type of salamander that belongs to the sub-family Pleurodelinae and the family Salamandridae. All newts are salamanders but not all salamanders are newts.

They spend their early stages of life in water hatching to larvae. The larvae feed on small invertebrates and other larvae. It takes some months for it to undergo complete metamorphosis to become adults.

While in the water they use gills to breathe but after becoming adults, they move to land and they develop lungs which enables them to breathe while on the land.

It is found in Africa, North America, Asia, and Europe. It is kept as a pet in North America and Europe although its skin contains some toxins that may be harmful to humans.

They have webbed feet that enable them to move in the water. They also have a paddle-like tail which enables them to move water sideways as it moves.

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What is Salamander?

Salamanders are amphibians that are classified under the order Urodela. They vary from the smallest to the largest.

They are found in North America, Asia, Europe, South America, and Africa where they inhabit wet places. Those species that purely live in water do not develop hind limbs.

The species that live on trees when they are adult, they have webbed feet which make them move easily and climb up and down the trees.

Their skins are dull-colored. They have smooth and moist skins. They have longer with more rounded tails and have well-developed toes for digging in the soil.

The females go back into the water to lay eggs. They lay up to 450 eggs. After they have undergone a complete metamorphosis and become adults, they move on land and develop lungs for breathing.

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Main Difference between Newt and Salamander

  1. Newts may live in water or on land while salamanders mostly live-in water.
  2. Newts have brightly colored skins while salamanders have dulled colored skins.
  3. Newts are covered with warts which give them bumpy skin while salamanders have smooth and moist skin.
  4. Newts have four limbs while salamanders have vestigial rear limbs or no limbs at all.
  5. Newts have paddle-like tails while salamanders have round tails.
  6. Newts have webbed feet while salamanders have well-developed toes for digging in the soil.
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Similarities between Newt and Salamander

  1. Both can either live on land or in water.
  2. They belong to the same family.
  3. They feed on the same animals.
  4. They both lay eggs.

In Conclusion

Newts and salamanders are different from each other although the two have been confused by people. Newt is a type of salamander. They belong to the same family although they have different characteristics and behavior.

Newts are brightly colored while salamanders are dull colored. Newts contain toxins in their brightly colored skin which may be harmful to human beings. The main feature that makes newts different from salamanders is the classification.

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