So, birds have a rather significant disadvantage, Tthey "jump" into the air, which requires beefy legs that become dead weight in flight.
Bats and giant pterosaurs circumvented this problem through "quad launch". Simply put, they use their wing muscles to "pole-vault" into the air, effectively cheesing through the most difficult part of flying.
My dragons are supposed to do something similar, but there are three things in the way:
- Dragons have six limbs, though they mostly serve the purpose of locomotion and derive their strength from leverage instead of bulk. The forelegs are rather weak and take up little space, the humerus of the wing inserts just behind it.
- Despite their low density, they weigh at around 500 kilograms and are about as big as a Clydesdale. Sure, they were engineered to make use of carbon allotropes, allowing for their tissues to have higher strength and it's been demonstrated that there is no intrinsic/easy-way-out weight-limit to biological flight.
- Compared to giant pterosaurs, dragons have a lower profile, as while they're formidable in combat, a sizable detachment of an army could seriously f them up. Thus, dragons tend to use The Secret Joestar Technique when encountering armies and evac the area, in addition to their adeptness at stealth.
How can I make quad launch work for a six-limbed, quadruped creature that stays closer to the ground and only towers over people in spirit? Demonstrative pictures/videos would be appreciated.
You might want to take a gander at Jabbing Wookiee from Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, piece of Sh#t that movie was.