Hibernation and estivation
Musacchia, X. J. Department of Physiology and Space Science Research Center, University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri.
Graham, Jeffrey B. Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California.
Lyman, Charles P. Department of Medical Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Last reviewed:May 2021
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- Cold-blooded animals
- Reptiles and amphibians
- Warm-blooded vertebrates
- Deep hibernators
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
General terms applied to conditions of dormancy and torpor found in certain animals. Hibernation and estivation are physiological states of reduced metabolic activity exhibited by certain animals. In particular, many cold-blooded (poikilotherm or ectotherm) vertebrates and invertebrates undergo periods of hibernation and estivation (Fig. 1). These phenomenon can be seen readily when body temperatures of poikilotherm animals drop in a parallel relation to ambient environmental temperatures. Relatively few species of mammals and birds [warm-blooded (homeothermic or endothermic) vertebrates] exhibit hibernation and estivation. See also: Ecology; Energy metabolism; Metabolism; Physiological ecology (animal)
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