Definition of ecdysis in English:


Pronunciation /ˈɛkdɪsɪs/ /ɛkˈdʌɪsɪs/


mass nounZoology
  • The process of shedding the old skin (in reptiles) or casting off the outer cuticle (in insects and other arthropods).

    • ‘At ecdysis, the animal sheds the old exoskeleton while absorbing large quantities of water to stretch the new exoskeleton.’
    • ‘In both groups, tissue loss must occur before a critical period to permit regeneration before the next ecdysis and proecdysial processes are suspended during regeneration in order to maintain proper timing of events.’
    • ‘During terminal pleateau there are a series of large pulses of circulating ecdysteroids which appear to be necessary for successful ecdysis of the entire exoskeleton.’
    • ‘Upon ecdysis, a chitinous duplicature of the exoskeleton is shed and a growth band is added to the valves.’
    • ‘Considering Crustacea as an analogy, abnormal secretion of exuviation hormones in trilobite exoskeletons could also have caused irregular ecdysis and given rise to aberrant exoskeletal morphology.’


Mid 19th century from Greek ekdusis, from ekduein ‘put off’, from ek- ‘out, off’ + duein ‘put’.



/ˈɛkdɪsɪs/ /ɛkˈdʌɪsɪs/