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diapause di·a·pause (dī'ə-pôz')
A period during which growth or development is suspended and physiological activity is diminished, as in certain insects in response to adverse environmental conditions.
spontaneous interruption of the development of certain animals, marked by reduction of metabolic activity. It is typical of many insects and mites, a few crustaceans and snails, and perhaps certain other animal groups. This period of suspended development is an apparent response to the approach of adverse environmental conditions. It may occur during any life stage but is most common among pupae (e.g., the cocoons of moths).