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Difference Between Chordates and Vertebrates

The main difference between chordates and vertebrates is that vertebrates have a backbone, while chordates do not necessarily have one. Additionally, vertebrates have a heart with two or more chambers and a constant body temperature, while chordates have a heart with two or more chambers and a variable body temperature.

Difference Between Chordates and Vertebrates

Difference Between Chordates and Vertebrates

Chordates

Chordates are a group of animals that includes fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. A key characteristic of chordates is the presence of a dorsal nerve cord structure, also known as a neural tube, at some point in their life.

In addition, they also have a head and a tail, a two-chambered heart, and a closed circulatory system. Chordates also have gill or lung respiration and a variable body temperature.

Vertebrates

Vertebrates are a subgroup of chordates that are characterized by having a vertebral column, which is made up of a series of bones called vertebrae.

In addition to the spine, vertebrates also have a skull, which protects the brain, and an internal skeleton that provides support and protection to internal organs.

Vertebrates include fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. They also have a heart with two or more chambers, gill or lung respiration, and a constant body temperature.

Comparison Between Chordates and Vertebrates

Characteristics Chordates Vertebrates
Presence of nerve cord Always present in your life Always present in your life
Presence of spine Absent or present in some stages of your life Always present in your life
Head Present Present
Heart One heart, two chambers One heart, two or more chambers
Breathing Branchial or pulmonary Branchial or pulmonary
Body temperature Variable Constant

FAQ’S About Difference Between Chordates and Vertebrates

What is the main characteristic of chordates?

The presence of a notochord, a flexible rod-like structure, is the defining characteristic of chordates.

What distinguishes vertebrates from other chordates?

Vertebrates are characterized by the presence of a well-developed vertebral column (spine) that surrounds and protects the dorsal nerve cord.

Are all vertebrates chordates?

Yes, all vertebrates are chordates, but not all chordates are vertebrates. Vertebrates represent a specialized subgroup within the larger phylum Chordata.

Do all chordates have a vertebral column?

No, not all chordates have a vertebral column. Invertebrate chordates, such as tunicates and lancelets, lack a true backbone.

Which animals belong to the chordate phylum but are not vertebrates?

Tunicates (sea squirts) and lancelets (amphioxus) are examples of chordates that do not possess a vertebral column.

What is the function of the notochord in chordates?

The notochord provides structural support and serves as a precursor to the vertebral column in vertebrates.

Are all vertebrates animals with a spine?

Yes, all vertebrates have a spine, but the structure and composition of the spine may vary among different vertebrate groups.

What are the major groups of vertebrates?

Vertebrates are classified into five major groups: fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals.

Which group of vertebrates includes humans?

Humans belong to the group of vertebrates known as mammals.

Can chordates be found in marine environments?

Yes, chordates are found in various environments, including marine habitats. Tunicates and lancelets are examples of marine chordates.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Chordates constitute a phylum characterized by a notochord, while vertebrates, a subgroup of chordates, additionally possess a vertebral column (backbone) made of vertebrae.

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