Questions tagged [creature-design]

For questions regarding the viability of a life-form design. These questions should focus on biologically plausible creatures.

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How does a collective consciousness species avoid overpopulation?

I have talked about collective consciousness. The basic run down is that a collective consciousness species replaces cells, tissues and organs with ants, specialized ants and groups of specialized ...
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2answers
202 views

What adaptations to a mammal's eyes would allow it to see large contrasts well, and what other effects would those have?

There is a nocturnal mammal, about the size of a common red fox, which has evolved (by way of some unspecified-at-this-point selective pressure) the ability to see well in situations involving large ...
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3answers
350 views

What is the botanic equivalent to ears?

As part of a series on plant animals, plantimals if you will, I am now asking about ears. All surface life has them or some sort of equivalent to them and with good reason. Other than sight, hearing ...
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3answers
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How would having two pairs of vocal cords affect the voice of a humanoid?

If a humanoid had a second pair of vocal cords or similarly functioning structures under the primary vocal cords, what would be the effect on the voice? Would this allow the humanoid to sing with two ...
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3answers
475 views

Could eating rocks provide sufficient calories for survival?

The question is really all in the heading: is it possible for a macroscopic organism to subsist entirely on rocks and still gain enough calories to survive? I know of Lithotrophs but all known ...
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2answers
350 views

Anatomically correct Penanggalan / Manananggal

The Penanggalan / Manananggal is a vampire-like creature found in Southeast Asia (the former in Malaysia, the latter in the Philippines, with some differences in behaviour). It is described as a ...
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3answers
264 views

How to steal hemoglobin from other people/animals

I made a couple changes to get the biology correct. Thanks, Lucas. I am working on a story where vampires have a biological, rather than mystical, reason to take the blood of others. They cannot ...
3
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3answers
416 views

The Evolution of African Wild Dogs who can float

The 'Before' Picture Imagine if African Wild Dogs developed the ability to float. There is no scientific explanation to how they can float; it's just happened and we do not need to know why. The dogs ...
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3answers
367 views

Could a tetrapod evolve from a hexapod?

I'm thinking of an alien alien world that has a vast biosphere. Now the creatures of this planet have evolved to be hexapods though there are a few creatures that are tetrapods (only have four limbs). ...
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2answers
795 views

Sharks with frickin' lasers!

Yes, this is about Dr. Evil's dream: Sharks with frickin' lasers. Except that the lasers would not be artificially attached, but be part of the animal itself (bio-lasing instead of simply ...
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3answers
663 views

The “Golden” Horde

In Hellboy 2, the titular protagonist and his party face up against a so-called 'Golden Army', which consisted of golden colored automatons who could constantly rebuild themselves after death. For my ...
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4answers
428 views

What is the deadliest acid a hypothetical biological creature could utilize as a weapon?

There are a lot of acids in the world, many of them present in biological creatures. Humans, for instance, have hydrochloric acid in their stomachs. What I'm wondering here is just how nasty it could ...
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3answers
909 views

Melanin and you

Melanin is what causes the color to appear in the skin, hair and eyes. But in humans there seems to be a limit to this. For example human hair can be orange(gingers) but not green or blue. iris's can ...
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2answers
286 views

Methane Dragons

The Leech Dragon, so named for its round, leech-like mouth, is by far one of the creepiest and most vicious dragons. Part of the reason for its infamy is its ability to exhale toxic and very flammable ...
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2answers
364 views

How do I make the tardigrade sapient?

For those that do not know, the tardigrade is a microscopic animal that can survive: extreme heat extreme cold extreme levels of radiation lack of water indefinitely lack of food indefinitely and ...
5
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1answer
83 views

No iron for your fair-folk maiden? (Part 2: Radioactive metals)

For reference, here is part 1 No Iron for your fair-folk maiden? (Part 1) A brief recap. My fair-folk are weak to all metals, but each metal has their own specific effects. The last question resulted ...
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2answers
370 views

Can a “dune” worm actually swim in sand?

I watched this video. A network of pipes blows air at the bottom of a bathtub filled with sand. The sand behaves just like water. Objects can float or sink in it. Children can play in it. So, my ...
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1answer
559 views

How much metal could a humanoid safely have in its skin and bones and be functional?

Question definitions: "safely" - the metal would be strictly beneficial; there would be no health problems caused by it (perhaps at least for most, there may be "birth defects" which cause some of ...
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1answer
456 views

Sexual reproduction without biological sex

Can a creature evolve to reproduce by exchanging the genetic code of two individuals without having any biological sex? So anything with male, female, both or a third sex is excluded. If it is ...
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3answers
794 views

What needs to be different in order for a parthenogenetically reproducing species to evolve sentience?

I am specifically interested in a form of reproductive cycle something like that of aphids on earth, where several generations of female-only parthenogenesis go by, followed by a generation being born ...
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3answers
231 views

Draconic Creature externally getting electricity [closed]

So this idea I've been pondering involved a Asian/Eastern Dragon that could shoot electricity(lightning) but the electricity is externally generated so how exactly would that work? This is what i've ...
2
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4answers
198 views

What would be the best members for a collective consciousness?

The idea of a collective consciousness is pretty simple: instead of cells you have small hive insects (such as ants, bees or termites) that make up a larger creature. This is different from a hive in ...
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2answers
324 views

Purpose of Engineered Organic Flying Whales

This is question #1 regarding the background art of Worldbuilding.SE One of the first things I noticed when I found this site was that amazing background picture. I like to think a great story can ...
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2answers
222 views

How to design Hobbit to colonize extreme planet?

A Weyland-Yutani like conglomerate wants to colonize exoplanet in the habitable zone of the orange dwarf 0.75 M of the Sun. The planet has 2 X Earth diameter 3g surface gravity atmosphere 92% ...
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2answers
157 views

Creating a Scientifically Semi-valid Pseudo-Arthropod Primate Part 3: Mouth Parts

As a parody of the super soldier questions and as an efficient way of organizing these questions I will now start this series of questions about Pseudo-Arthropod Primates. Previous questions from ...
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7answers
14k views

Anatomically Correct Strange Women In Ponds Distributing Swords

Chaos plagues the land. In the West, the King in Orange blusters and bloviates endlessly in barely comprehensible gibberish. Perhaps he is attempting to call forth the Elder Gods? In the East, the ...
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5answers
8k views

Anatomically Correct Succubus

The succubi are popularly represented as women with horns and bat-like wings. They feed on the vital energy in myths, but could a humanoid creature resembling a woman evolve and feed only on human ...
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12answers
9k views

Creature that swims in the solid ground

I have a moment in my story where the main character comes across a planet with "solid" swamps. Let me explain. Basically, there are creatures here that can swim through the ground like it was some ...
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3answers
3k views

Naming the forces of the Purgatory?

I'm trying to build a world loosely based on ideas about afterlife in Christianity. In my world God is nowhere to be found and supernatural forces are split into three factions: Hell, Heaven & ...
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6answers
5k views

Are hoofed bipeds feasible?

Satyrs, fauns, pan, and even the devil are commonly depicted as humanoid bipeds with goatlike unguligrade hooves for feet. However, common as such beings may be in fantasy and mythology, I have been ...
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15answers
10k views

Can telepathy and telekinesis exist in biological creatures?

I would like to create a sentient creature with telepathy and/or telekinesis. Can either (or both) of these concepts exist biologically? If yes, what would the biological mechanism be? Would a ...
16
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3answers
849 views

How would a tail affect fighting styles? Or would it have basically no effect?

There are several varieties of tails that I am interested in: Fully Prehensile Tails, able to manipulate objects, carry weapons/ shields (though note they may not be able to wield them effectively) ...
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5answers
6k views

Anatomically correct sharknado shark

Raining animals is a rare meteorological phenomenon in which flightless animals fall from the sky. Such occurrences have been reported in many countries throughout history. One hypothesis is that ...
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8answers
2k views

Dragon script/writing system — how would it work?

Let us assume we have our prototypical European dragon representative over here, George. He has four ground-limbs with four clawed digits including an opposable digit on the forelimbs, normally is ...
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7answers
6k views

What can I do to make blood black?

In my world I find it simplest to have iron-based blood. The problem is that iron-based blood is red, and I want it to be black. Two things come to mind; one is making the blood denser, resulting in ...
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16answers
8k views

What kind of supernatural powers don't break the masquerade?

I'm designing a world a of supernatural beings loosely based on Christianity/Judaism as described in Naming the forces of the Purgatory? who visit Earth without humans being aware of them. They ...
23
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4answers
12k views

How can I develop scientific names for my species'?

I'm building a fantasy world and I am building the animals that inhabit it. Now I am working on the animals that live in this world, and after building their anatomy, I wonder about their names. I'm ...
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4answers
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Biological ''Helmet''

What I'm thinking about is simply an animal,any with a protective bony-like shell covering its eyes. The shell must be openable for clear vision but when closed the animal still has the ability to ...
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15answers
5k views

In a world without obstacles, would life evolve wheels?

Imagine a planet whose surface is perfectly spherical, without any kind of obstacles anywhere. In such a world, it would be a competitive advantage for any lifeform to evolve wheels, as transport and ...
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14answers
5k views

Can we use science to explain a creature that feeds on emotion?

This is a magic world question, and we certainly do not have anything on this planet which feeds on emotion. But if we did, I'm wondering how it might work with a look at science for something ...
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14answers
4k views

Alternate uses for dragon wings? [closed]

So since there’s that pesky thing called the square cube law, it’s pretty universally accepted that large dragons have no chance at actual flight. However, all is not lost for the concept of giant ...
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7answers
5k views

What traits would a species need to survive in magma?

How might such a species evolve? How would they swim, navigate and breed? How big could they grow, and what complications might arise out of their growing very large?
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5answers
448 views

Feasibility of a Crystal Ecosystem

In my Fantasy world there exists a crevice. Plants and animals made of glittering, iridescent crystalline structures in abundance. The crevice can contain any arbitrary materials that might make the ...
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7answers
5k views

Could a creature have eyes that change color based on their mood?

In various fantasy stories I have read and seen there is a trope known as Eye Colour Change Warning: TV Tropes!. In many cases the person or creature's eyes change color as a sign that they are ...
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6answers
8k views

Are dragons cold or warm blooded?

My world is science-based with an earth-like biology. The dragons fly when they're young and then grow too heavy and can only glide if at all. They breathe fire by expelling gas and igniting it. They ...
21
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9answers
7k views

How to increase the efficiency of lungs

Humans (and mammals) have 2 lungs, one right and the another left. The right lung has 3 lobes and the left have 2 lobes because in the "third" there is the heart, so the right lung is bigger than the ...
18
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4answers
647 views

Physiological adaptation of life on a planet orbiting a red giant.

Let's say there exists an Earth-like exoplanet which orbits a normal star, with a similar process regarding the evolution of life on earth, yet the star became a red giant during said evolution. ...
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2answers
937 views

Anatomically Correct Boar Troll

I request some help with the design of one particular denizen of my fantasy world, tentatively named Boar Troll. It needs to be an ungulate or closely related creature with emerging sentience, and ...
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6answers
1k views

Is it possible for an organism to evolve to generate its own nuclear power?

Is it possible for an organism to evolve to biologically generate its own nuclear power? If so, how would this evolution occur?
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6answers
6k views

What could make an insect race intelligent?

TL;DR: I want a society which behaves as a hive. Is it plausible and how to achieve this? The setup: Different planet in our universe. In other words: Normal, physical rules apply, there is no magic ...