We may all have some familiarity with winged skulls - from Avenged Sevenfold's album covers to bikie shirts. However, for my science-fiction/horror story, I am curious about how these creatures would actually evolve and develop.
- These creatures would simply be skulls (around the size of a human skull - although it doesn't necessarily have to be a human skull) with wings attached to their back, and potentially a tail running perpendicular in-between the wings for balance and control during flight. They would have limited muscle and flesh, aside from tendons controlling the jaw, their wings, and tail (depending on what popular opinion says, I may close off the bottom of the skulls either with bone or flesh).
- All other organs would be internal, stored where the brain would be. As such, their brain will be smaller, and their lungs, stomach, and other organs would have to be quite small too.
- Due to having no legs, and as such lacking an ability to land, these creatures would have to be perpetually in flight. As such, I am thinking of these skulls' habitat being around lava lakes and volcanoes, where the hot convection currents of gas could keep them afloat.
Diet and Reproduction
I would definitely prefer these creatures to be carnivorous, and not be afraid to attack a human explorer through biting their flesh off them. Aside from that, they could also attack insects, birds and other animals on the ground.
Regarding reproduction, due to the difficulty in physical reproduction between these species, I believe releasing spores/sperm and eggs is the best way to go. A female could also release eggs, and a male could fly past and fertilize them.
With all of these conditions in mind, how could such a creature evolve?