Definition of estivate in English:


(also aestivate)

intransitive verb

[no object]Zoology
  • (of an animal, particularly an insect, fish, or amphibian) spend a hot or dry period in a prolonged state of torpor or dormancy.

    • ‘Some crocodilians also estivate.’
    • ‘The majority of these species are considered frequent digesters, whereas eight species fast for extended periods, either as sit-and-wait foragers or while estivating.’
    • ‘When the water evaporates, the crocodiles estivate, or pass the summer in a kind of torpor.’
    • ‘They played a recording of a savanna fire to reed frogs that were peacefully estivating in Ivory Coast's Comoe National Park.’
    • ‘Many crayfish flee the sun downward, tunneling after the subsiding water table until they reach moist mud in which to estivate.’
    • ‘The larvae complete their feeding in less than two weeks and then estivate in cocoons, which they construct in the ground.’
    asleep, sleeping, slumbering, resting, reposing, drowsing, comatose, supine


Early 17th century (in the sense ‘pass the summer’): from Latin aestivat-, from aestivare ‘spend the summer’, from aestus ‘heat’.



/ˈestəˌvāt/ /ˈɛstəˌveɪt/