The third-stage dispersal juvenile (JIII) is the stage for survival and dispersal in the winter of the pine wood nematode, Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. Through investigations at different temperatures, we found two kinds of growth-arrested development, including the adult longevity extension and JIII formation induced by low temperature. They showed similar characters: densely packed lipid droplets and extended longevity. We considered that there were four stages in the formation of growth-arrested stages: induction, growth-arrested pathway, growth-arrested development and cold-tolerance duration. Moreover, at 4°C there were significant changes in secondary metabolites, which may be related to signal communication and metabolism associated with the formation of growth-arrested stages. The results suggested that low temperature was necessary for the dispersal of pine wood nematode and influenced distribution and intensity of pine wilt.