Lizard vs Salamander (Difference Between Salamander and Lizard)

salamander vs lizard

Salamanders and lizards share similarities in many habits but at the same time they are also different in some aspects. Here we will discuss salamander and lizard differences and learn some interesting facts about them.

What Does a Salamander Look Like?

Salamanders are amphibians that look similar to a cross between a frog and a lizard. Their bodies are long and slender, their skin is moist and smooth, and they have long tails. Salamanders are very distinct; some have four legs while some have two. Some have lungs, some have gills, and some breathe through their skin. 

Salamander belongs to the order of Caudata, one of the three orders in the Amphibia class, along with frog and toads, and caecilians with no legs and resembling giant worms. 

What Does a Lizard Look Like?

Lizards are reptiles, and there are more than 4,675 species of lizards. A large number of lizards have four legs; some have two legs, while others have no legs. Some lizards can be seen with frills, horns or wings and lizards in nearly every color imaginable. Lizards usually have small heads, long bodies, and long tails. With so many species of lizard, it is understandable that they come in a wide variety of sizes. 

Salamander Size:

With different types of salamanders, there are many different sizes. Most salamanders are around 6 inches long. The largest is the Japanese giant salamander, which can grow up to 6 feet from head to tail and weigh up to 140 pounds. The smallest is the species of Pygmy salamander, which can be as small as 0.6 inches. 

Komodo Dragon Size:

The giant lizard is the Komodo dragon, which grows up to 10 feet long and weighs up to 176 pounds. The smallest lizard is the tiny dwarf gecko that grows to 0.6 inches long and weighs .0042 pounds. 

A scaly lizard skin does not grow like other animals; most of the lizards shed their skin, or molt, in large flakes. They also have the capability of breaking off their tails when a predator holds it.

Also read difference between monitor lizard and komodo dragon.

Difference Between Salamander and Lizard:

Salamander Habitat:

Salamanders live worldwide, but the United States has the most significant number of different salamander families. All recognized families, except for Asiatic salamander, are found in the United States.

The salamander’s habitat depends on the type of salamander species. Salamanders typically spend most of their time on land, so their skin is dry and bumpy. All the salamanders’ species need to keep their skin moist and tend to have their offspring in water, so a nearby water source is critical. Some salamanders live in caves and have adapted to live in darkness with pale skin and significantly reduced eyes. 

Habitat of Lizard:

Lizards inherit all over the world in almost every type of territory. Some live in trees others prefer to live in vegetation on the ground, and some can be found in deserts among rocks. For example, the Texas horned lizard is found in warm areas with little plant cover in southern North America. On the other hand, the northern fence lizard prefers to live in cool pine forests in northern North America.

Salamander Habits:

Salamanders are more active during cold times of the day and are nocturnal. During the day, they lounge under rocks or in trees to stay calm. At night they come out to eat. 

Their bright and colorful skin warns predators to stay away. Many species of the salamanders have glands on their neck or trails that secret a terrible tasting or poisonous liquid. Some can also protect themselves from predators by squeezing their muscles to make the needle-sharp tips of their ribs poke through their skin into their enemy. 

Lizard Habits:

Most of the lizard’s species are active during the day. The reptiles are cold-blooded animals, and they have to depend on their environment to help them keep warm. They use the sun’s heat to raise their body temperatures and are active when their bodies are warm. The sun also helps lizards produce vitamin D. Their days are spent sun-bathing on rocks, hunting for food, or waiting for food to pass through their way. 

Some lizards are territorial, while others can comfortably live with dozens of other lizards of many different species. Except for mating times, some lizards are not social. There are some exceptions, like desert night lizards living in family groups.

Salamander Diet:

Salamanders are carnivorous animals and prefer to feed on slow-moving prey such as worms, slugs, and snails. Some of the more significant types of salamanders eat fish, small arthropods, and insects. Some also consume frogs, mice, and even other salamanders. 

What do Lizards Eat?

Many lizard species are carnivorous, and their typical diet includes ants, spider, termites, cicadas, small mammals, and other lizards. Some lizards are omnivorous, which means they eat both meat and vegetation. Clark’s spiny lizard is the example of an omnivore lizard. 

Salamander Reproduction:

Many of the salamanders’ species lay eggs, and some give birth to live offspring, such as the alpine salamander. Depending on the type of species, they can lay eggs up to 450 at a time. For example, the Santa Cruz long-toed salamander lays 200 to 400 eggs at a time. Spiny salamanders guard their eggs by curling their bodies around them. They also turn them over from time to time. Some amphibians wrap leaves around each egg to keep them safe. 

Salamander’s eggs are transparent and jelly-like, much like frog eggs. Baby salamanders are just like baby frogs. Their eggs are laid in water, and the young are born without legs. They resemble tadpoles, as they get old, they grow legs. Some salamanders do not become sexually mature for up to 3 years, and some live up to 55 years.

Lizard Reproduction:

Many lizards lay eggs while others carry live young. For example, frilled lizards lay 8 to 23 eggs, while some skinks live young. The incubation for a lizard egg can last up to 12 months. 

Most baby lizards are self-sufficient from birth and can walk, run, and feed on their own. Depending on the species, the young reach maturity at 18 months to 7 years. Some species can live up to 50 years. 

Skink Facts:

  • Skink is one of the lizard species that belongs to the Scincidae family.
  • There are around 4500 species of skink that can be found throughout the world.
  • Skink inherits in different locations such as deserts and trees. Different species prefer to live according to their body temperature.
  • Their diet includes ants, spider, termites and cicadas. Since these lizards are known as a predatory organism, they can be omnivores and herbivores as well.
  • One exciting fact about skinks as they breathe through their tongue. 

As we have seen that lizards are enormous than salamanders if we consider their size. However, both the species are known to defend themselves by biting their predators. Salamanders can easily win against its smaller opponent, but it can be challenging for the salamander to win against species bigger than them like lizards and skinks. 

Salamander vs Lizard: Fight Comparison

When we compare two animals, it is essential to include size as an essential factor. The larger the animal, the more durable it is, and the faster it will always win. Usually, the lizards are more significant than the salamanders and most likely to win.

Lizards and salamanders fight by biting each other. However, disaster may not be recorded since both the salamanders and the lizards do not have much power to kill, unless the lizard or salamander is enough to swallow its opponent.

Also read about giant salamander habitat,