Questions tagged [biology]

For questions about living things. Does not exclude aliens, but additional information is usually necessary (consider using "xenobiology" instead).

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1answer
39 views

How do you determine if food is edible [duplicate]

I want to have a story where my character's find them selves on earth many thousands of years after an asteroid killed off most of life on earth. They have been in a bunker along with many other ...
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2answers
54 views

What kinds of wounds would a laser weapon leave?

I've got a bog-standard, handwavium-powered, handheld laser weapon of the "realistic" variety (Lightspeed "shots", a mostly invisible beam, no "pew" noise). When I pull the trigger, an intense laser ...
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1answer
43 views

Could complex Precambrian life be possible?

I have a really good question. Could it be possible for complex life to have existed in the Precambrian? I’m aware that only the fossilized remains of bacteria have been discovered from that time ...
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2answers
94 views

What evolutionary pressures would lead to solitary hominids?

Solitary humanoids aren't uncommon in works of fantasy/cryptozoology with Bigfoot coming to mind. What I want to know is What evolutionary pressures would lead to solitary humanoids? Some ...
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4answers
58 views

What organs or modification needed to have tree that gain energy from lightning or electricity?

As the title: I want to know what kind of organs or modifications need for plants like tree to gain energy from lightning or electricity (and still fine or safe or alive of course). Since I have a ...
6
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1answer
91 views

Could a creature use lightning/electricity as its energy supply?

Could a creature use lightning (or any other source of electricity) as a sole energy source, and not need to eat? Would any additional organs be needed to store or use the electricity? I have a race ...
4
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1answer
65 views

Alternative evolution mechanisms using cell fusion

I am trying to understand if it would be possible for organisms to evolve by different means other than random mutations and natural selection. Eukaryotes were predicted to be formed by fusion with ...
3
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1answer
80 views

Could penguins evolve to have fingers?

I've been trying to make a penguin-like humanoid race for a pretty long time now. I want to make them as realistic as possible. And I know such creatures could not exist in the real world, but I want ...
6
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2answers
364 views

To carry a person in its palm (like King Kong) how much pressure and at what speed would a kaiju need to apply?

Assume my kaiju is around 200 feet tall, weighs around 4,000 US tonnes and resembles a large lobster with two giant claws for its front legs and long spindly limbs with tiny pincers on the ends for ...
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2answers
118 views

How to sneakily erradicate thousands of humanoid tribes that live in the sea? [closed]

This question isn't about structuring the plot of a story. It has nothing to do with any element that isn't listed in this post. It's about what technical solutions would be best to solve a really ...
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1answer
85 views

How long can a human body function at safe levels in slightly higher and lower gravity?

I have a number of alien species from different planets with gravity between 0.5g and 1.75g and I wanted to have groups of each of the species to exist together in a space habitat. As pointed out to ...
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0answers
33 views

How to make penguins a plausible humanoid race? [closed]

I have been thinking of writing a story for many years. However I don't like the idea of using humans as my main characters. I always thought about using penguins. I already have their world, ...
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7answers
804 views

anatomy or musculature to achieve full rotate jaw?

you know a jaw or mouth where the jaw full of teeth fully rotate like a drill or gear to shred their food or prey, usually show often in worm type of monster (my question is not necessary to be worm ...
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0answers
31 views

Giant velvet mites?

Velvet mites are some of the largest mites in the world, with species in the genus Dinothrombium reaching 12 mm in length (absolutely massive for a mite). What is the largest possible size a velvet ...
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5answers
142 views

biologically or anatomically is there a problem with this type of double mouth or jaws?

i am not talking about xenomorph or moray eel type of jaws or multiple mouth or lower jaw inside the mouth. but this type of mouth/jaws or i called it double chin jaws where the chin also work as ...
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7answers
2k views

Would a sapient being sensitive to polarized light be able to see the angle of polarization in a photograph?

Many animals have the ability to see polarized light (or rather, are sensitive to the direction of polarization), most notably birds and bees but also a wide range of other animals including ...
5
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2answers
129 views

A creature with a built in flashlight

I know things like flashlight fish exist; things with luminescence and all that. But how strong could the light be? I have this cave dwelling species with three eyes except the middle one isn't ...
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4answers
219 views

How big can a giant get before losing human level intelligence?

In many fantasy worlds, giants are as intelligent as human beings and others races that they either avoid stepping on or step on regularly. However, due to the square cube law, giants have a limited ...
5
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4answers
164 views

What would the biology of magic plants that get their energy through pure darkness look like?

In a world just like our own, one day, everything turned dark. Literally, as the planet was consumed by near-total darkness, the clouds turning black and allow little to no natural sunlight through ...
5
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2answers
73 views

Proportions of a giant humanoid?

In a humanoid mammal, say 15-20 feet tall, how would the brain, heart, reproductive organs, facial feature and other attributes scale up? In very large mammals, the brain seems to be comparatively ...
6
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2answers
63 views

Most efficient actinopterygian jaw structure?

Ray-finned fishes have a variety of interesting and complex jaw structures. Here is the skeleton of an anglerfish Here is the skull of another actinopterygian I am designing a large (roughly ...
3
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1answer
76 views

More Human-Like Secretary Birds

So, I am dealing with a certain trouble that I'll need a help with. In my fantasy story, there is artificially formed species (magically created, but non-magic anatomy rules apply) of "humanized" ...
5
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2answers
88 views

How would Humans change, or evolve, to being Domed for many thousands of years?

A little snippet from my story idea, for some context- "The Earth Government Collapses, caused by the cutoff of resources from the Colonies. Large-Scale war soon erupts, with Nuclear Weapons being ...
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0answers
86 views

Largest possible worm? [duplicate]

Earthworms can reach 22 feet in length, nematodes can grow to 27 feet, tapeworms can reach 130, and some ribbon worms can stretch 180 feet. In my world, I want giant worms with hundreds of feet long ...
4
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1answer
99 views

How large can an animal's eye realistically get?

The largest eye in the world belongs to the giant squid, which has eyes up to 27 cm in diameter (some reports from the 1800s say 40 cm). Extinct ichthyosaurs also had very large eyes, 20-30 cm in ...
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1answer
62 views

Anatomically correct quadrupedal arthropod?

Most arthropods have at least six legs. Some mites have four and some insects have none, but for the most part, they have six or more. What would the anatomy of a large quadrupedal arthropod be like? ...
3
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1answer
107 views

Does this magic system seem sufficiently hard-rational?

The world I'm making is primarily sci-fi with a few elements of hard fantasy (the fantasy is mostly aesthetic). The magic system I've come up with so far consists of these premises: 1) Everything in ...
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3answers
2k views

Feasibility of six inch space-faring aliens

I’ve recently been playing a alien game with various alien species. After playing for a bit, I wondered whether or not a 6-inch tall intelligent race could exist. I can already see some major ...
2
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2answers
50 views

How would head shaping affect the ligament attachments of a gorillas skull?

After researching many head shaping cultures like the Paracas and proto Nazca it seems there is no adverse affects beyond physical. What would the affects be on a gorilla? Would it be able to function ...
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6answers
2k views

Ending “Natural” Reproduction

Quick Overview Here's the situation: your species, under directive of your friendly world government, has been informed that all "natural" (aka reproducing like your normally would and having a child ...
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5answers
174 views

Evolved insect eyes

In one question I asked how insects can evolve their base biology to grow in size here. Which was followed up by this question about how well the antennae would fare when increased in size here ...
7
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6answers
528 views

why wouldn't a beneficial mutation be passed down to descendants?

Individuals are born with mana, which accounts for their life force and has a hand in determining the strength of their spells. Mana level and composition is determined by a person's genes, which they ...
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17answers
7k views

What species will benefit most from humanity's having been here?

Assuming that as a species, we do ourselves in, not through war but through environmental neglect and overpopulation, what species will benefit most from the effect we have had on the planet during ...
7
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1answer
57 views

How fast can a large animal knuckle-walk?

Start with a silverback gorilla, make it roughly three times bigger, assume it's bone and muscle structure is capable of compensating for the increased size: how fast can a thing like that reasonably ...
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0answers
43 views

Selection pressures acting on the Goliath from 'Evolve?' [closed]

I know someone's already asked wether this thing was feasible, but I had a slightly different question: I wanted to know what kinds of things could drive something to... well 'evolve' the way the ...
5
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2answers
150 views

How quickly could a “shapeshifter” lose mass, realistically?

Shapeshifters and mass... ever the bane of realistic science fiction. Basics: Let's say someone is changing shape (for whatever reason, voluntary or involuntary, it doesn't matter for this purpose). ...
2
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1answer
93 views

Could life similar to life on earth exist and evolve in a large enough region of timespace?

Is it possible for a planetary system to form and support life similar to earth-life inside a region of 'timespace' (which is the space within a black-hole), assuming that there is enough space/time ...
5
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2answers
107 views

Is it possible to retrofit white blood cells with neural network technology to fight infection?

I have been toying the idea of fusing our white blood cells which search and destroy malicious foreign bodies with artificial intelligence to fight various disease causing pathogens, my worry is that ...
4
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3answers
110 views

Could an animal evolve iridescent horns that appear metallic like chrysina resplendens' chitinous exoskeletons?

Sort of two questions here, but very related. One about whether a mammal-like animal could evolve to have a chitinous endoskeleton, I guess. Then a question of whether, if they grow horns, that ...
5
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1answer
47 views

Could cilliates evolve into multicellular creatures?

Would it be possible for a cilliate, such as Stentor, to evolve into a large multicellular organism similar in form to the original unicellular body-plan?
5
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1answer
68 views

Evolutionary adaptations in sensory organs among wildlife in sandstorm?

What possible evolutionary adaptations could you foresee in the sensory organs of wildlife in an environment beset by a nigh-permanent sandstorm? e.g. in the case of vision, ways to protect the eyes ...
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2answers
69 views

Eradicating tobacco crops with a synthetic agent

Is there any possibility that some advanced biowarfare program could conceivably make a contagious agent of some kind (Parasitic? Viral? Fungal? Your choice) that affects the growth of tobacco crops?
4
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1answer
65 views

Can mercury compounds be used in chemosynthesis?

While watching Biblaridion's Alien Biosphere series, an interesting point came up: in Biblaridion's fictional world, atmospheric hydrogen sulfide is used as an energy source for chemosynthetic ...
4
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3answers
132 views

What adaptations would a tree need to survive an area with monthly fires?

Imagine a plain made of tall grass that sways in a gentle breeze. Everything is a deep green and there is a riot of life sprouting from the black ground. A few days later, the grasses turn brown and ...
4
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4answers
98 views

How can a creature that feeds on energy not grow more powerful?

Elves are magical creatures that use Mana as a source of power for their spells. Individuals are born with different amounts, which increases as they age and will determine their potential of magical ...
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6answers
2k views

Spacewalking in 0.3c - is it feasible? [Generations novel]

Imagine a spacecraft travelling at very high speeds, say 0.3c. While a crew member could theoretically suit up and perform spacewalking maintenance on the outer body of the ship, will they be exposed ...
4
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5answers
124 views

Augmentations - Jumping high!

I am trying to make a reasonable augmentations. The settings is post cyberpunk, so the tech is little more advanced. For coolness I would like to have ability to jump around 5 meters high ground-leg ...
2
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0answers
88 views

What would a room full of six month old skeletons smell like? [closed]

I'm sure six months of decomposition, even in an enclosed, low-humidity space, will have the bodies reduced to dry skeletons. By then, would you still have the classic dead body stench that sends ...
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6answers
1k views

How can my dragons follow your movement with their eyes?

So, dragons. They're omnivores and, while they would be potentially formidable hunters, mostly scavengers. This requires them to be more sparing with their energy. Still, they fly and flight needs ...
3
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3answers
116 views

How can a powerful acidic substance not break down inorganic material?

A Gelatinous Cube is a massive, slime-based jelly that haunts underground dungeons, and is composed of an acidic substance which breaks down material. These creatures are unintelligent and crawl ...

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