Definition of endotherm in English:



  • An animal that is dependent on or capable of the internal generation of heat.

    Compare with homeotherm
    Often contrasted with ectotherm
    • ‘However, the problem is severe for an endotherm, particularly a small endotherm, which must maintain a steady internal temperature and has a considerably greater demand for respiratory oxygen.’
    • ‘For example, display and assessment of potential mates may be less costly for endotherms at higher temperatures than at lower temperatures.’
    • ‘Differential expression of seasonal energetic adaptations generates a continuum in the trophic status of endotherms during winter.’
    • ‘Extant birds are accomplished endotherms and many maintain the highest body temperatures.’
    • ‘They are endotherms and they can finely tune the thermal, water, and chemical balance of their bodies from minute to minute.’


1940s: from endo- ‘within’, on the pattern of homeotherm.