What is the difference between cold-blooded and warm-blooded animals?
Animals are grouped as cold-blooded and warm-blooded according to their ability to regulate body temperatures. Thermal homeostasis is the process where animals try to maintain their body temperatures.
The main difference between cold-blooded and warm-blooded animals is that the former refers to the animals that cannot regulate their internal body temperature while the latter refers to animals that can regulate their body temperature.
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Comparison Table (Cold-Blooded vs Warm-Blooded Animals)
|Basic Terms||Cold-Blooded Animals||Warm-Blooded Animals|
|Meaning||These are animals that are unable to regulate their internal body temperatures||These are animals that have the capability to regulate their internal body temperatures|
|Alternative Name||Poikilothermic animals.||Homeothermic animals.|
|Body Temperature range||Tend to be variable since it depends on the surrounding temperature||It is usually constant and ranges from 35-40 degrees Celsius|
|Metabolic Rates||Depend on the environment temperature||Environmental temperature has no effect on metabolic rate|
|Phase||It occurs in two phases i.e hibernation and aestivation||Do not undergo any phase|
|Organ System||Simple less energy organ system like the brain||Have high energy complex organs|
|Heat Regulation||It is done by stretching in the sun, changing body color, and sunbathing||It is by undertaking metabolic activities and adaptive activities|
|Resistance against microorganism||Not resistant against microorganisms||Have an immune system that defends the body against microorganisms|
|Energy Production||Gain energy in form of heat to help regulate body temperature for survival||Produce heat within the body|
|Survival||Cannot survive in extreme temperature conditions||Can survive in extreme temperature conditions|
|Heat Source||Direct sunlight and heat from the environment||Produce heat after consumption of food|
|Proteins||Have multiple proteins in the body and perform different functions||Body proteins are not temperature specific|
|Genome||Usually quite complex||Quite simple|
|Effect of body fats||Excess fats cause overheating of the body||Excess fats help to maintain internal body temperature|
|Examples||Invertebrates like fishes, snakes, crocodiles||Vertebrates like birds and mammals|
What Are Cold-Blooded Animals?
Cold-blooded animals are those animals that cannot regulate their internal body temperature. Instead, the body temperature is determined by the surrounding temperatures.
It implies that the body temperature of these animals tends to fluctuate due to the changes in the environmental weather.
Another crucial thing to note that these animals cannot survive in extreme temperature surroundings. The metabolism rate changes with a change in the environment.
Common examples of cold-blooded animals are fishes, snakes, crocodiles, and insects. All invertebrates belong to this category.
What Are Warm-Blooded Animals?
Warm-blooded animals are those animals that have the ability to regulate their internal body temperature. The body temperature is nearly constant despite changes in environmental temperature.
These animals have complex internal mechanisms that help the animal to generate heat in cold areas and coolness in warm areas. It is something that enables these animals to survive in extreme temperatures.
Examples of warm-blooded animals are mammals and birds. These creatures usually obtain energy through food consumption. Their metabolic rate does not change with surrounding temperature changes.
Main Difference between Cold-Blooded and Warm-Blooded Animals
- Cold-blooded animals cannot regulate their internal body temperatures while warm-blooded animals can regulate their internal body temperatures
- Warm-blooded animals obtain energy from food consumption while cold-blooded animals obtain energy from the surrounding
- Warm-blooded animal fats help to maintain internal body temperature while cold-blooded animals more fat causes overheating which can lead to death
- Cold-blooded animals cannot survive in extreme temperature change while warm-blooded animals can survive in extreme temperature change
- The body temperature of warm-blooded animals are quite constant while that of cold-blooded animals tend to vary with environmental change
- Metabolic rate in warm-blooded animals does not change with the environment while that of cold-blooded animals tend to change with the environment.
Similarities between Cold-Blooded and Warm-Blooded Animals
- Both happen in the animal kingdom
- Both cause a change in body temperature
- Both body temperature is affected by the environment
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Cold-blooded animals cannot maintain their temperature and warm-blooded animals can maintain their internal body temperature.
Warm-blooded animal examples are birds and mammals while the cold-blooded animal list is fish, toad, insects, and crocodiles.
The core difference between warm-blooded animals and cold-blooded animals is that the former are vertebrates while the latter are invertebrates.
More Sources and References
- Warm-blooded. Wikipedia
- Cold-bloodedness. Britannica