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This really should be under Ectotherm instead of Cold-Blooded, since Cold-Blooded is archaic and not technically correct. Woofles 01:30, Apr 20, 2005 (UTC)

I believe the title of this page should be "Ectothermic" because "cold-blooded" is a term used by people who are not really into Biology and such - "Ectothermic" is the proper word for "cold-blooded". I do agree with Woofles. Kapt'n S 01:14, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

  • Does "cold-blooded" technically refer to poikilothermic rather than ectothermic? The subtle etymological difference being that the former refers to a variable body temperature and the latter to an organism dependent on external sources of heat. I suppose if it is a new title, this is academic but perhaps for historical reasons? If anyone changes this, also have a look at warm-blooded, which similarly I would propose as homeothermic rather than endothermic --postglock 08:49, 6 Jun 2005 (UTC)

"Cold-blooded" etymology[edit]

"Cold-blooded" is such a blanket term that it encompasses poikilothermy, ectothermy, and bradymetabolism. Theoretically, it would best fit creatures that fall between all three categories. This would still exclude a lot of creatures who are often referred to as "cold-blooded." Further frustration results from the erroneous belief that cold-blooded creatures are actually incapable of maintaining and controlling their body temperatures. The end result is that a cold-blooded animal is an animal that doesn't actually exist. Hence one of the main reasons why it is in such disfavour.

With that said, "poikilothermy" is no more correct than "ectothermy", for thermophysiological classification. "Bradymetabolic" is probably the most useful term, as it is the most common feature seen in creatures normally called "cold-blooded." Still, there are even exceptions to this (e.g., caterpillars are poikilothermic and ectothermic, but tachymetabolic).


Is the term "heterothermic" still in use? "Homeothermic" appears in Wikipedia for "warm-blooded". -- 14:43, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)Jeff Worthington 2005-06-24

  • Yeah, it's sort of a unique type of poikilothermy. Still it was worth mentioning, so I gave it a quick write-up. The bit about regional heterothermy is always useful to know. Also, since it straddles the line between what fits best under warm-blooded and what fits best under cold-blooded, I gave it its own page. Jura 06:47, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Types of Temperature Control[edit]

Regarding the sentence that begins "Some large poikilotherms"--Large animals that maintain constant body temperatures (all the time) are not poikilotherms--they are inertial homeotherms | gigantotherms. In contrast, some large animals are only homeothermic | gigantothermic some of the time.

The paragraph that mentions large poikilotherms needs more information because not all members of the groups you have mentioned are poikilotherms. For example, a large dinosaur would be a homeotherm and the sea turtle a poikilotherm (some sea turtles may be homeotherms). Large dinosaurs are homeotherms (homeothermic all of the time) because of their large size. Some species of sea turtles are homeothermic some of the time. They float on the surface of the ocean to absorb heat and then, after submerging again, stay homeothermic for periods of time because of their sheer size. During long periods of time underwater their body temperature may decrease, depending on the temperature of the surrounding water. Their body temperature may also decrease when they float on the surface of the ocean at night, depending on the surrounding temperature. Suzanne 18:37 11 Jun 2006

mammals can also be poikilotherms during development. many young altrical animals such as the rat(Rattus norvegicus)have to develop there themoreguatory system and start out as a poikilothermic endotherm at birth and once it has reached a certain mass (~30g)at around 3 weeks olds it is able to maintain its body temerature so becoming homeothermic.

Cold - Blooded[edit]

Can someone please tell me if cold-blooded animals can feel? Since I was a child I've always believed that they couldn't feel pain... And I'm not able to find out if this is true or not. I know that they can feel temperture difference but that has to do with their blood not with their feeling.... thanks

i'm sure they can

Plants & Cold-Blooded[edit]

Are plants cold-blooded? (since they don't regulate the temperature of their internal structures)

(The Caped Crusader (talk) 02:29, 14 May 2008 (UTC))

Cold - Blooded (dictionary)[edit]

What about Cold blooded in the sense of being very evil? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Good point, but this isn't Wiktionary: On the other hand, a link to the wiktionary entry would be useful, if someone could recall the syntax for that. Richard W.M. Jones 17:46, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

Proposed Change[edit]

I do not understand why my changes were reverted. I think everyone here can agree that this page should be under "ectotherms" instead of the outdated term "cold-blooded". "cold-blooded" should redirect to ectotherm, not vice versa. This change reflects the retirement of a term that is no longer used due to it's inaccuracy. I made this change because it has been discussed, and there is no reason to have such a misnomer on wikipedia.

I completely agree, this is an encyclopedia, not a "Childs Biology". I agree with the change to ectotherm. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:55, 10 March 2008 (UTC)

I totally agree with this, as well. This is an encyclopedia, and 'cold blood' is a lazy and informal term. StevePrutz (talk) 22:06, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
Idea: perhaps make this term a disambiguation page? StevePrutz (talk) 22:08, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
Fine by me. The less vague and the more precise the better. --Jwinius (talk) 22:54, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
I would disagree that cold-blooded and ectotherm are synonymous. The term is used as a wastebin for all animals that are not birds, or mammals, and thus includes many animals that are homeothermic ecotherms, endothermic poikilotherms, and endothermic bradymetabolic animals. An earlier revision of this page had that. If we are going to go to a shorter, disambiguation page, then I would recommend we do the same for warm-blooded as well. Jura (talk) 16:58, 14 August 2010 (UTC)

Article splitting commencing[edit]

Work has begun. Please feel free to help out after a few hours. StevePrutz (talk) 16:12, 6 February 2009 (UTC)

I am pretty much done with the initial work. If anyone knows how to quickly fix all the little redirects to their new proper home, please help! Also, I am making a navbox for all the terms. StevePrutz (talk) 16:54, 6 February 2009 (UTC)

Navbox template[edit]

Check out {{thermoreg}}. It's not that pretty, so if you have a better way to present it, please do so. StevePrutz (talk) 17:21, 6 February 2009 (UTC)