Main difference – Endoskeleton vs Exoskeleton

Skeleton provides the structural assistance to animals, facilitating the activities of the body and protecting internal organs. The main difference between endoskeleton and exoskeleton is the endoskeleton is the hard part found within the body whereas exoskeleton is the hard part found outside of the body.

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Generally, endoskeleton is derived from the endoderm when the exoskeleton is obtained from the ectoderm. Endoderm is the innermost layer and ectoderm is the outermost great of the three primary germ great that occur in the an extremely early embryo. Endoskeleton is found in vertebrates and also exoskeleton is found in arthropods. Endoskeleton is live and is comprised of bones and cartilages conversely, exoskeleton, which is a non-living component, is consisted of of an outer-covering of chitin or calcium compounds. The hydrostatic skeleton is a kind of water-based skeleton found in worms.

Key areas Covered

1. What is Endoskeleton – Definition, Characteristics, Function 2. What is Exoskeleton – Definition, Characteristics, Function 3. What room the Similarities in between Endoskeleton and Exoskeleton – rundown of typical Features 4. What is the Difference in between Endoskeleton and also Exoskeleton – compare of vital Differences

Key Terms: Arthropods, Bones, Cartilages, Chitin, Endoskeleton, Exoskeleton, Mollusks, Support, Vertebrates


What is Endoskeleton

Exoskeleton describes an inner skeleton such as a bony or a cartilaginous skeleton of vertebrates. All vertebrates such as fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and also mammalians have actually an endoskeleton. The main function of the endoskeleton is to serve as the internal support system. Endoskeleton is an ext flexible than the exoskeleton. It gives structural support and protection come the interior organs. It additionally provides sites because that the attachments of muscles. Thus, endoskeleton can transmit forces to the muscles. The endoskeleton of a wolf is shown in figure 1.


Figure 1: Endoskeleton

Endoskeleton is made up of bones and cartilages. In cartilaginous fish, the endoskeleton is exclusively comprised of cartilages. A bone is composed of concentric rings of bone cells recognized as osteoblasts. The extracellular procession is comprised of calcium phosphate. Bones articulate v each various other by creating joints. Some joints room immovable while the others move. Ligaments attach bones to various other bones. Tendons connect muscles to the bones. 

What is Exoskeleton

Exoskeleton refers to the external skeleton such as chitinous skeleton in arthropods. Arthropods such as insects, crustaceans, arachnids, Chilopoda, and Diplopoda consists an exoskeleton. Exoskeleton also provides support to the body and also protection to inner organs. The wing of the insects room attached come the exoskeleton v muscles. However, exoskeleton does not grow as the body grows. The is shed several times during the life bicycle of arthropods in a process known together molting. A molted exoskeleton the a mantis is shown in figure 2.


Figure 2: Molted Exoskeleton the a Mantis

Mollusks likewise possess one exoskeleton in the form of a hard, safety outer-covering. The exoskeleton of mollusks is made up of calcium compounds other than for chitin. Some reptiles such as turtles also possess a hard exoskeleton as mollusks. The exoskeleton of both mollusks and reptiles is not shed during growth.

Similarities in between Endoskeleton and also Exoskeleton

Endoskeleton and exoskeleton are two species of tough structures in animals.The main role of both endoskeleton and exoskeleton is to provide structural support.Both endoskeleton and exoskeleton help the activity of the body and also protect inner organs.

Difference between Endoskeleton and Exoskeleton


Endoskeleton: Exoskeleton describes an inner skeleton such as the bony or cartilaginous skeleton that vertebrates.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton describes an external skeleton such as the chitinous skeleton in arthropods.


Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton is comprised of calcium and phosphorus.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton is made up of scales, chitinous cuticle or calcified shells.


Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton current inside the body.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton existing outside the body.

Found in

Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton is discovered in vertebrates.

Exoskeleton: Endoskeleton is uncovered in arthropods.


Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton is comprised of bones and cartilages.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton is made up of chitin or calcium compounds.


Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton is a life structure.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton is a non-living structure.


Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton develops from the endoderm.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton creates from the ectoderm.


Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton grows together the human body grows.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton go not flourish with the body. So, it has to be shed over time.


Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton is more flexible than the exoskeleton.

Exoskeleton: Exoskeleton is less flexible.

Attachment that Muscles

Endoskeleton: Endoskeleton offers structures for the attachment of muscles.

Exoskeleton: The wing of insects are attached come the exoskeleton v muscles.

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Endoskeleton and exoskeleton room two varieties of tough structures in animals that provide structural support. Endoskeleton is an inner skeleton made up of calcium phosphate. The is uncovered in vertebrates. The exoskeleton is an exterior skeleton made up of chitin. It is found in arthropods. The key difference in between endoskeleton and also exoskeleton is the event of the skeleton in the human body of animals.


1. Skeletons in Animals, Cliffnotes, accessible here. 

Image Courtesy:

1. “1033686” (CC0) via Pixabay2. “Mantis exoskeleton” through RudiSteenkamp – Own job-related (CC BY-SA 4.0) via Commons Wikimedia