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The species I have created, are a species of gliding reptiles. They look primarily like horned lizards and measure up to 20 feet long, 7 feet wide, and 5-6 feet tall. however, they posses wings that stretch out over 1 mile and are 25 feet wide.

My species do have secondary wings, these wings are a bit smaller than the first wings, only being 32 feet long and 5 feet wide. The wings of the species are photosynthetic and like whales, the species will open their mouths for a short time frame to capture small, krill like organisms that fly in massive quantities. My species can sleep whilst gliding, but prefer to land atop high mountains and wrap their body’s up with their wings to assure a safe sleeping area.

What I want to know is, could my species feasibly evolve in my story and if not, what can be removed or added to help them evolve?

To clarify, the world in my story is very earth like, but only posses a slightly lower gravity than earths.

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    $\begingroup$ "over 1 mile" ?? The only living structures I know that can be that big are a clonal colony of trees and an ancient mycelial network. Please sketch out these proportions and compare to prehistoric creatures. Also, in general, looking at current understanding of animal physiology will lead you to realistic creatures. $\endgroup$
    – kleer001
    Mar 2, 2020 at 17:47

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they posses wings that stretch out over 1 mile

Your species is extremely implausible. There are very few structures, period, that are this large; in fact, the only such structures I'm aware of would be bridges, or maybe causeways, all of which are stationary and require a lot of engineering to support themselves even so. Wings this large? Forget it. Just building biological wings the size of a jumbo jet, less than an order of magnitude smaller, is generally considered extremely difficult to implausible.

"Slightly lower gravity" doesn't help. Even in microgravity you'd have some trouble justifying something this large.

...And this, as Adrian reminded me, is only the start of your problems. Even if you somehow magically overcame the raw structural problems, your wings are so grossly out of proportion to the rest of the body that they can't possibly work. We'll ignore blood circulation and energy requirements, since you said they're photosynthetic; basically, your critters have enormous leaves on their bodies. Even so, just moving the things would require huge muscles way out of proportion to the rest of their bodies.

There is a solution to this, at least if you can overcome the structural problems; the wings are filled with lighter-than-air gas. However, your critters are going to be effectively sessile.

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    $\begingroup$ "We'll ignore blood circulation and energy requirements, since you said they're photosynthetic" because the central nervous system of an impossible creature doesn't need photosynthetic nutrients and the wings don't need water to photosynthesize something. This is to show impossible creatures are impossible in all respects, existence included. $\endgroup$ Mar 3, 2020 at 1:03
  • $\begingroup$ @AdrianColomitchi, indeed, how the wings would grow in the first place is questionable. If they're basically plants, though, it's somewhat less ludicrous that they can absorb enough water on their own, and don't rely on blood being circulated. (The main body has a heart, I assume, but is smaller than a blue whale, so that's not a gratuitous problem if it doesn't need to supply the insane wings.) Do the wings even have nerves? $\endgroup$
    – Matthew
    Mar 3, 2020 at 3:19
  • $\begingroup$ If blood doesn't need to go into the wings, why does the monstrosity need to feed on krill? My assumption was that it needs protein to maintain a resemblance of skin or flesh. "Do the wings even have nerves? " Well, they are supposed to fold and unfold, right? Some muscles would be necessary, and some nerves too. This letting aside the wing attitude adjustment to balance over whatever small turbulence that will happen across 1 mile. Should I mention direction/altitude change? 'Cause I can't imagine that krill will align itself by be eaten. $\endgroup$ Mar 3, 2020 at 12:25
  • $\begingroup$ ...because it's maneuverability is virtually non-existent and krill don't dodge? Again, though, I said "somewhat less ludicrous", not "possible". Anyway, folding up one mile long wings isn't really plausible either, so I'm sort of ignoring that also. Really, though, arguing over exactly how ridiculous the wings are seems like a case of gilding the lily. $\endgroup$
    – Matthew
    Mar 3, 2020 at 15:35
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Nope.

Estimate the thickness of the wing to stretch over 1 mile when unfurled from a body 7 feet wide, and 5-6 feet tall. The simplest calculation: the entire body is made only from a fan folded wing, with the fold line along the length. So 1 mile divided by 6' gives 880 folds; if 880 folds make 7', 1 fold - the thickness of the wing - takes 0.00795'=0.095" (=2.43mm). With no room to spare for a heart that needs to pump blood to distances of half a mile, through blood vessels no thicker than 2.43mm

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    $\begingroup$ Heh, good point about blood circulation... even if you can overcome the bare structural issues, that's only the start of the problems. $\endgroup$
    – Matthew
    Mar 3, 2020 at 0:38

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