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Here in this post it is said that a dragon can breathe fire releasing a highly flammable oil, my Dragon's breath will follow the same logic. My dragon will not be wild, it will be created specifically to be mounted and used as weapons.

So, based on that, what species of animals would be better for my dragon's diet to help him produce this oil better and why would it be such an animal?

Oh, and my dragon goes bigger than a horse (his body will, because the wingspan will be more proportionate), enough for a knight to ride on. Its size would be about three meters tall and trunk would be about two meters long and almost one meter wide. My dragon will also be able to help with cooks, blacksmiths and any other professional who needs fire as a baby. I hope these details help to create a more constructed answer.

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ You are asking a lot of questions in this post. This site has a requirement of one, and only one question per post. Can you edit your post so that you're asking a single specific answerable question. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Commented Sep 27, 2021 at 23:57
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    $\begingroup$ Again, I'd strongly recommend that you ask "how" rather than the binary version of a question, it'll give you something far more useful. (Whichever of your questions you edit down to). $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 0:09
  • $\begingroup$ Closed questions are automatically entered into a review queue upon editing. Posts that have been edited to meet posting guidelines will be reopened. That does include making sure that the questions your are asking haven't been asked already. It seems like you want to ask some follow up questions based off the answers in another post. I'd still recommend checking but it's likely that they haven't been asked on this site before. If you edit your post so that it's clear that you're asking about the production of these exotic oils, and only that, your post will remain open. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 2:00
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    $\begingroup$ Worth considering that sprayed burning oil risks dripping and splattering and with continued burning in a way that a gas flame will not. The smith should probably be operating over a sandpit, and maybe not anywhere with wooden furniture. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 9:09
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    $\begingroup$ Even after your edit you are still asking two different questions: the diet and how long to produce the oil. $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 18:56

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You're allowed to ask only one question per post, so I'm only going to answer the first question: what diet would best result in the oils needed for combustion?

For that let's look at the oil of the Sperm Whale.

Sperm oil was particularly prized as an illuminant in oil lamps, as it burned more brightly and cleanly than any other available oil and gave off no foul odor. (Source)

The oil was collected from the head cavity of the Sperm Whale:

Blubber was stripped from the entire length of the whale (with other parts of the carcass often harvested for fashion products such as in the case of the Baleen whale), but the primary source of sperm oil was the spermaceti organ and the junk (or "melon"), the organs that serve to focus and modulate the animal's vocalizations. A sperm whale's spermaceti organ may contain as much as 1,900 litres (500 US gal) of substance. (Ibid.)

The oil is very flammable and has the benefit of burning cleanly and very brightly. So, what does a Sperm Whale eat?

Because sperm whales spend most of their time in deep waters, their diet consists of species such as squid, sharks, skates, and fish that also occupy deep ocean waters. (Source)

It's important to realize that most creatures create a variety of substances in their bodies that have basically nothing to do with any particular diet — much less any particular item in that diet. Biology is remarkably adept at converting whatever mass is taken in (within reason, plastic isn't useful) into whatever is needed.

It should be noted that most of the Sperm Whale's diet is very high in fatty creatures. Obviously it's easier to convert fat into fat (or oil into oil), leading to the belief that your dragon would want to eat very fatty items as well. Like bears, they would likely be fond of Salmon, which are a very fatty fish.

And if your dragons are small, as shown in your image, then they would feed like Raptors (hawks and eagles), which further underscores that their diet would be rich in oily fish.

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  • $\begingroup$ You asked earlier where the rules are that say you can ask only one question. If you click on the "Close" link of any question you'll find "Needs More Focus." Its definition: "This question currently includes multiple questions in one. It should focus on one problem only." I do apologize that the help center is not complete, but it's important to understand that just because you see someone get away with breaking the rules that there must not be rules or they shouldn't be enforced. Whenever you drive above the speed limit, you're simply betting no policeman is present. The rule is still valid. $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 23:37
  • $\begingroup$ Do you have any land animals that can also be part of the dragon's diet? Like cow or something? $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 29, 2021 at 8:54
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    $\begingroup$ @WizardKing Humans are capable of creating oils in their bodies despite diets that range from vegetarian to almost complete protein eaters. Frankly, I think any diet would do. But other than animals that have been bred by humanity to have higher fat, there are none that are as fatty as fish that I'm aware of. $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Commented Sep 29, 2021 at 15:38
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Science-based check: not gonna happen, unless your dragon is way bigger than a horse - like at least one order of magnitude.

It has to do with the efficiency of its metabolism - oil packs quite a large specific energy. Unless your dragon simply collects and store the oil as it is from other sources, its metabolism will have to work at least twice as hard to synthesize it from the diet intake (for a 50% metabolic efficiency - which is waaay unusually high). If the dragon is small and consume its oil reserves fast, it will be out of action and vulnerable for quite a long time.

The only way** to get around is to increase the production capacity relative to the amount used in a "flaming" session. This can be sustainable achieved only by increasing the size of the organs producing the oil. Hence, make it one order of magnitude large than a horse and maybe it will be able to breathe out a decent flame for a decent amount of time without depleting its reserves to the point of being thrown out as an empty fuel bottle.

** no, increasing the production speed goes a very short way without using magic. As an example, you can't feed a tanker of gasoline fast enough through a grass mower engine and expect the engine to power an airliner


On the line of "no oil synthesis by metabolic means, just collection and storage until needed as it is", I'd suggest a diet heavy in eucalyptus leaves - the Australian forest fires are quite spectacular due to the eucalyptus oils. Mind you, the animal with an eucalyptus leaves exclusive diet sleeps the best percentage of the time (yes, I mean koala)


See also

  • Lipid metabolism - digestion imply breaking from triglycerides to monoglycerides

  • Triglycerides - also a form of body energy storage, thus recomposed in the animal body from the digested monoglycerides.

Note that an "oil" is usually an unsaturated form of fat, allowing it to remain liquid at ambient temperature; those in animal energy reserves are mostly saturated fats (have higher melting points, the body doesn't like to have them sloshing around, but in fixed places)

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  • $\begingroup$ If I understand correctly, the guy says that oil is synthesized from fat, wouldn't that make oil production easier? $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 29, 2021 at 7:29
  • $\begingroup$ @WizardKing "the guy says..." which guy? Otherwise, if it is science-based, have a look over Lipid metabolism - each of the transformation stages requires some energy. Granted, less energy than transforming glucose into fat (thus easier in a certain extent), but surely not with negligible cost. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 29, 2021 at 7:40
  • $\begingroup$ The guy who answered the link post. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 29, 2021 at 8:22

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