Are Fish Amphibians? Introducing 10 Aquatic Pets That Are

Do you think fish and amphibians are the same? You’re mistaken! These are two different classes of aquatic pets, each with unique characteristics and habitats.

With their scales and gills, fish dominate underwater, while amphibians can thrive both in water and on land. It’s a fascinating distinction.

Have you ever considered owning a pet that can live in water and on land?

Consider the excitement of observing their unique behaviors up close. Today, I’m introducing you to 10 aquatic pets that are actually amphibians, not fish.

But before I share the list, let’s understand the major difference between fish and amphibians and decide which amphibious pet suits you best.

Understanding the Difference Between Fish and Amphibians

Fish are aquatic animals that can only live in water, while amphibians can live in and out of water. The main differences between these two groups of animals include their habitat, skin type, and the presence of limbs.

Fish have scales, gills, and fins, while amphibians have smooth, moist skin and limbs for movement. Here’s the complete comparison in tabular format for a better understanding – 

HabitatFish are only able to live in water.Amphibians can live both in and out of water.
EvolutionFish are much older as a class of animals.Amphibians evolved from fish about 370 million years ago during the Devonian period.
MovementFish propel themselves through water using fins.Amphibians have limbs that allow them to run, jump, climb, or swim on land and water.
BreathingFish breathe by filtering oxygen from the water through their gills.Amphibians breathe air, although some can hold their breath underwater for extended periods.
SkinFish are covered in scales, and their skin prevents material from passing through.Amphibians have permeable skin, which allows gases and molecules to pass through.

10 Aquatic Pets That Are Amphibians

1. African Dwarf Frogs

These small, fully aquatic frogs are an excellent choice for those new to amphibian keeping. They are relatively low-maintenance and can be housed in a small aquarium. African Dwarf Frogs are known for their unique swimming style and entertaining behavior.

2. Axolotls

Firefly Axolotls
Firefly Axolotls

Axolotls, also known as Mexican walking fish, are aquatic salamanders with a unique appearance. They have feathery gills and a wide, flat tail. Axolotls are relatively easy to care for but require a larger tank with cool water temperatures.

3. Fire-Bellied Toads

These colorful, semi-aquatic amphibians are known for their striking red and black bellies. Fire-Bellied Toads require a habitat with both water and land areas, and they are relatively low-maintenance pets.

4. Newts

Newts are small, brightly colored salamanders that can be found in a variety of aquatic habitats. They require a tank with water, land areas, hiding spots, and live plants. Newts can be a bit more challenging to care for but are rewarding pets for experienced keepers.

5. Tiger Salamanders

Tiger Salamanders are one of the largest terrestrial salamanders, with striking patterns and colors. They require a large tank with water, land areas, and plenty of hiding spots. Tiger Salamanders can be long-lived pets, with some individuals living over 20 years in captivity.

6. Pacman Frogs

Pacman Frogs
Pacman Frogs

These large, round frogs are known for their voracious appetites and striking colors. Pacman Frogs are terrestrial amphibians that require a humid environment with a shallow water dish. They can be low-maintenance pets but have specific dietary requirements.

7. Red-Eyed Tree Frogs

These iconic, brightly colored tree frogs are popular pets due to their stunning appearance. Red-Eyed Tree Frogs require a tall, humid terrarium with plenty of climbing opportunities and hiding spots. They can be a bit more challenging to care for but are rewarding pets for experienced keepers.

8. Tomato Frogs

Tomato Frogs are named for their bright red coloration and round body shape. These terrestrial frogs require a humid environment with a shallow water dish and hiding spots. Tomato Frogs are relatively low-maintenance pets but need a diet of live insects.

9. White’s Tree Frogs

Also known as Dumpy Tree Frogs, these large, docile frogs are popular pets due to their easygoing nature and unique appearance. They require a tall, humid terrarium with climbing opportunities and hiding spots. White’s Tree Frogs are relatively low-maintenance pets and can be a good choice for beginners.

10. Mudskippers


Although not true amphibians, mudskippers are fish with amphibious traits, making them an interesting addition to this list.

These unique fish can live in and out of the water and require a specialized brackish water setup with both land and water areas. Mudskippers can be challenging to care for but are fascinating pets for experienced keepers.

Choosing the Right Aquatic Amphibian Pet

Selecting the perfect aquatic amphibian pet requires careful consideration of various factors to ensure a suitable match for both the pet and the owner. Here are some key aspects to consider when choosing an aquatic amphibian pet:

1. Size and Space Requirements

  • Assess the available space in your home and the amphibian size when fully grown.
  • Ensure you can provide a tank or terrarium for specific species, including water and land areas.
  • Larger amphibians may require more space and a more complex setup.

2. Maintenance and Care

  • Research the specific care requirements for each species, including habitat setup, temperature, humidity, and lighting.
  • Consider how much time and effort you can commit to maintaining the amphibian’s environment and meeting their needs.
  • Some species may be more low-maintenance, while others might require more attention and expertise.

3. Diet and Feeding

  • Understand the dietary needs of each species, including the types of food they eat and the frequency of feeding.
  • Some amphibians may require live or frozen food, which may not be suitable for all pet owners.
  • Be prepared to meet the specific dietary requirements of the chosen amphibian to ensure its health and well-being.

4. Lifespan

  • Consider the lifespan of the amphibian species, as some can live for many years, even decades.
  • Be prepared for a long-term commitment to care for the pet throughout its life.
  • Longer-lived species may require more advanced planning for their care and housing over time.

5. Temperament and Activity Level

  • Research the behavior and temperament of each species to ensure a good match for your lifestyle and preferences.
  • Some amphibians may be more active and engaging, while others might be more shy and nocturnal.
  • Consider if you prefer a more interactive pet or one that is more independent and low-key.

6. Compatibility with Other Pets

  • Evaluate the compatibility of the chosen amphibian with any existing pets in your home.
  • Some amphibians may need to be housed alone, while others can coexist with certain species.
  • Avoid stress and potential conflicts when introducing new pets to an established environment.

7. Experience Level

  • Assess your experience and comfort level with amphibian care and choose a species that matches your abilities.
  • Beginners may want to start with more low-maintenance and hardy species, while experienced keepers may be ready for more challenging and delicate species.
  • Don’t hesitate to seek advice from experienced amphibian owners or professionals to ensure the best care for your new pet.

By carefully considering these factors and thoroughly researching each species, you can make an informed decision and choose the right aquatic amphibian pet that will thrive in your care and bring joy to your home.

Final Thoughts

Fish and amphibians are two distinct classes of animals, and while fish cannot live outside of water, many amphibians can live both in and out of water.

By understanding the differences between these two groups and exploring the variety of aquatic amphibians available as pets, you can find the perfect addition to your home.

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