Q:

How do reptiles breathe?

A:

Quick Answer

Reptiles breathe in much the same way as humans do, inhaling and exhaling through their lungs. Some reptile species may be able to assist breathing through different means, such as permeable skin for gas exchange in aquatic turtles, but all reptiles must breathe through their lungs to survive.

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Full Answer

While lungs are required for all reptiles, how the air gets in and out of the lungs varies by species. Some species move air in and out of the lungs by axial musculature, while others use buccal pumping to be able to run for long distances without needing to stop to breathe. Crocodilians are the reptiles that breathe in a manner most similar to humans.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Do all reptiles have scales?

    A:

    All reptiles have scales or scutes that cover their skin, as this is a defining characteristic of the class Reptilia. Reptilian skin is horny and waterproof but lacks the thickness of mammalian skin. In some reptiles, the scales or scutes have a bony base that provides more protection.

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  • Q:

    What are the differences between reptiles and critters?

    A:

    The main difference between reptiles and critters is the type of animal being referred to. Reptiles are cold-blooded animals such as snakes, turtles or lizards. The word "critters," on the other hand, is a slang term often used to refer to any type of animal, regardless of species. The term is sometimes used to refer to a person as well, usually in a derogatory manner.

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  • Q:

    What adaptations do reptiles have?

    A:

    Reptiles have several notable adaptations which help them survive, including their ability to regulate their own body temperatures, their coverings of protective scales, their internal fertilization processes, amniotic eggs and in most cases claws for digging and defense. Some reptiles, like glass lizards and snakes, do not have limbs and thus are not effective diggers or burrowers.

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  • Q:

    Where do reptiles live?

    A:

    Reptiles live primarily in temperate and tropical climates. Reptiles are cold-blooded, which means they are unable to regulate the internal temperature of their bodies. Because of this, they have to live in warm and sunny climates.

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