Questions tagged [ecology]

Ecology is the scientific analysis and study of interactions among organisms and their environment.

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1answer
95 views

What would Martian Life be like? [closed]

Basically what I'm asking is how would hypothetical life be able to survive on Mars? Would they need to be created from scratch in some effort to make life on seemingly uninhabitable worlds or ...
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1answer
111 views

Could Giant Bats Fly with Giant Pterosaurs?

Last year, the Adult Swim program Primal treated us to perhaps the most Halloweenish episode yet, "Terror Under the Blood Moon", in which our two unspoken protagonists--the caveman "...
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Gardening in an Alien Biosphere

Take a world with the same physical characteristics as Earth, but where biochemical development has "rolled the dice" differently in some cases. The simple chemistry are the same compounds ...
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4answers
195 views

A world with extremely limited fossil fuels

So this is a slight revision of my earlier idea, of a world that entirely lacks fossil fuels. So basically the big idea I'm interested in is an industrial revolution that fully goes through with the ...
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2answers
134 views

Could Prehistoric Species of Animals Eat Modern Species of Plants and/or Animals?

One of the most recurring elements of paleofantasy is anachronism. For instance, this still is from the 1966 film One Million Years BC, and yes, that is a Triceratops fighting off a Ceratosaurus, a ...
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4answers
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Planet unhabitable by certain demographic [closed]

Space explorers with same tech level as in alien franchise found a planet. Planet had some carbon based, earth-like flora and fauna on it, but it still needed some additional touches, not a full blown ...
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4answers
151 views

What Might Cause Massive Landfall Of Dead Marine Creatures?

There is a stretch of coast in my world, fairly typical mudflats and beach (a bit smaller than the Wadden Sea). It is often called the Dead Shore because year round the place is littered with the ...
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2answers
158 views

Unicellular organisms evolving extremely rapidly in tiny forest ecosystems

My story takes place in dense woodland on highly uneven terrain in a temperate climate on Earth as we know it (e.g. central Europe), except a certain sort of magic is in operation. In this woodland, ...
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1answer
58 views

Would This Chosen List of Animals Occupy the Earthworm Niche?

To say that the earthworms are essential to the health of the planet Earth would be a gross understatement. So much so that there is no way that I can list you all their benefits at once. But what ...
5
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1answer
140 views

What are the risks and consequences of colonizing an inhabited Earth-like planet?

The planet I have in mind has an abundance of plants and animals, but no sapient species or civilizations (think Earth before humans came along). Wouldn't Earth micro-organisms wreak havoc on alien ...
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2answers
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What impact would a magical curse that saps the life from plants have on bodies of water?

I have a region in my homebrew D&D setting that used to be grassland/fertile farmland, and the breadbasket of the elven empire, until some wizards did a collective magical ritual that permanently ...
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7answers
562 views

The food chain was destroyed. How is it remade?

There was a nuclear war in my world Anthropocene. It caused a mass extinction of numerous animals on the planet, so many I can’t cover them all completely, so I’ll tell you what animals are left: ...
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What would be the ecological impact of short days in summer and long days in winter?

While working on the cosmology of a flat world, I came up with a satisfactory arrangement that would result in the following: Summer: Short, hot days and long, dark, hot nights. Winter: Long, cold ...
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What If Kangaroos Became An Invasive Species In Eastern North America?

What if kangaroos (specifically eastern grey kangaroos) became invasive in the eastern part of North America? How would they effect native flora and fauna? What would they compete for resources with? ...
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Most important/useful animals and plants to save from the apocalypse?

So, nuclear war is on the horizon. I’m order for humanity and Earth to survive on, organizations, both public and private begin to construct massive underground shelters, each with the ability to ...
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2answers
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Kinetically powered plant

This contributor to Deviantart had this idea that on eyeball Earths some plants might grow in the shadow of bigger plants and get energy from the wind, like a naturally occurring wind turbine. My ...
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How many types of zombies? [closed]

So everyone who knows a little bit about biology has a vague idea that after catastrophic events or Apocalypses there's always a boom in the variety of animals which evolve. Creatures like us only ...
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1answer
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Could a population lemurs evolve to suite colder climates and fill the niche or similar niche of squirrels?

In my world there is a southern continent that features some of the fauna from Madagascar and this includes the lemur. I’m wondering if the lemurs that live on this warm southern continent could ...
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What would encourage multiple animal species to evolve human features simultaneously?

The setting is fifty-five million years in the future on Earth, with multiple humanoid species that have different ancestors, but share similar characteristics. Their ancestors would be animals that ...
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2answers
124 views

What would a biosphere with naturally occurring undead population look like?

There exists a planet with a similar biological history of Earth that experienced a sudden inundation of the undead during it's equivalent of the middle Pleistocene. These undead are capable arising ...
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1answer
81 views

Number of small herbivores per acre

I am interested in world building of a alien biospheres, as is done for example in Alien Biospheres series. In this context, I would like to know some rule of thumb how to estimate number of animals ...
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4answers
400 views

Where can you find berries that eat people from the inside out?

My low-fantasy setting features the deadly plant known as the wormberry. It produces small berries of a bright-but-overall-undecided color, all of which contain a small, edible seed. They have two ...
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281 views

How do I stop Megalodon from going extinct?

A long time ago, the 60 foot long Megalodon roamed the oceans. Fast forward to 2.6 million years ago and they went extinct. In the story I'm writing Megalodon hasn't gone extinct surviving at least up ...
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What would be the repercussions of Megalodon never going extinct? [closed]

A long time ago the 60ft long Megalodon roamed the oceans, fast forward to 2.6 million years ago and they went extinct (and yes they definitely went extinct don't let the discovery channel fool you). ...
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How to create fictional earth ecosystems with lots of megafauna which can plausibly coexist?

Ecosystems like the african savanna have lots of megafauna which to some extent compete with each other for the same prey/vegetation, but still coexist just fine. So how do I construct similarly ...
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What Stops Dragons From Causing Ecological Collapse?

In my setting Dragons evolved on a n isolated continent far from where man evolved. But in the past thousand years dragons have been introduced to the human inhabited continent, which is filled with ...
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1answer
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Could an Environment Sustain Large Eusocial Animals?

Eusociality, is the most sophisticated level of organization of sociality, is defined by the following characteristics: cooperative brood care, overlapping generations within a colony of adults, and ...
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How long could this wildlife habitat sustain itself?

In my story a group of characters will be sent to a space habitat which contains some of the deadliest alien creatures for a survival training mission. The majority of the species will be carnivores ...
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2answers
223 views

Penguins in the Not-Arctic, how would this affect the poor seals

In a not so different fantasy world, whose physics and thus are similar to our own how would including penguins affect the look and function of a typical arctic ecosystem. For the purposes of this ...
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How big can Europan fish get?

Assumptions: Jupiter's moon Europa has a salty subsurface ocean in contact with a rocky mantle. The ocean is populated by hydrothermal vents produced by tidal heating. Global heat flow is similar to ...
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How does the ecosystem of the Underdark/underground world work?

The Old Ones build continent-sized bunker complexes to protect themselves from the enemy, which followed through the cosmic ocean. The Hunter succeeded easily despite their efforts and their corpses ...
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3answers
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What would happen if all stars disappeared?

I'm imagining a hypothetical scenario based on the Big Rip theory of the end of the universe (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Rip), where eventually the expansion of the universe causes everything ...
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1answer
132 views

Minor terraforming that allows people, and doesn't inconvenience local flora and fauna

What I'm looking at doing is a small game where you land on a planet, and the atmosphere is not survivable by a human being, but there is local life. Over the course of the game, terraforming has to ...
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3answers
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How big is a dragon's hunting territory?

Dragons are very territorial apex predators. They build lairs on mountaintops, roost whenever they aren't hunting, and they hunt from the sky. With their size, wings and firebreath, there is no ...
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1answer
121 views

How do I place my biomes realistically with only a köppen and topographic map?

I was wondering if anyone could help me figure out how to place the biomes in my continent. Though I have researched which biomes can occur in a certain climate, I'm still confused when it comes to ...
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238 views

Foraging behavior of a forest slime

The continent of Enyvea is home to a diverse population of slimes. These amorphous creatures are blobs of viscous goo of mostly homogenous composition. In order to move, they draw magic from the ...
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1answer
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What kind of planet environment could best host aliens like *Battle: Los Angeles*?

If I want a home for aliens like those which invaded in Battle:Los Angeles, what would be the best fitting features? The aliens: Burn water for fuel (assume they are using deuterium for fusion) ...
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What Australian Megafauna Would be Suitable for Domestication, if Any?

Imagine an alternate universe where the aborigines' impact on the Pleistocene Australian ecosystem was much less severe than it was in our timeline, and the Pleistocene megafauna managed to survive ...
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1answer
79 views

Could a Greater Number and Diversity of Marine Plant Species be Possible?

As landlubbers, we often let ourselves think that if salty seawater is undrinkable for us, it could be even worse for plants. However, certain types of angiosperms have found ways to not only thrive ...
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1answer
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If Vikings Settled on a Tropical Island, How Would That Affect Up The Native Ecosystem? [closed]

An ice age has hit the already cold planet of Ryu 108. Its inhabitants, with the culture and technology of Scandinavia at the height of the viking age, are forced to feed themselves with a drastically ...
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225 views

Does or could a collection of regions like this exist on Earth?

I initially assumed my world was going to be pure fantasy, but the more I think about it, the more I consider having the story take place somewhere on Earth, either as alternate history or the far ...
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4answers
208 views

How do semi-sapient yeti/ogres live in the wild?

Assume that a species of bigfoot-type animal/person exists. Most of this also applies to ogres or trolls, whatever big dumb giants your particular setting has. My world's specs: They range 7-10 feet ...
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236 views

Which modern organisms would survive a new K-Pg level impact?

EDIT: As many have pointed out, the whole Lunar Collision aspect I originally envisioned is probably more extreme than I predicted. I don't know where to start as far as the math goes, although my gut ...
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How many human inhabitants could Earth host in a far future? [closed]

Assuming a technologically advanced civilization that has grown sustainably from the resources of its own planet (and maybe "a few" additional resources from its own solar system), what would be the ...
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14answers
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Retroactively modifying humans for Earth?

I understand, of course, that humans evolved for this exact environment! However, if you could travel back in time 2,000 years and modify our species (without any unintended health consequences), ...
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1answer
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The Microecology of Living Quarters

A Question on the Balance of Ecosystems on the Microbial Scale Say that we had some living quarters on an Earth-like planet, within a moderately-sized base. The inhabitants of this base can freely ...
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415 views

Fertilizing desert in magical medieval world

Suppose there exists a magic-based civilization. Their mining techniques are medieval and their understanding of organic chemistry and biology are on the Enlightenment era level. However, they are ...
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Limitations of the interactions of fact and opinion thoughtforms in the Aethernet

The Setting Long story short, we cracked the code of the universe and then reprogrammed it to give ourselves admin privileges. But then, we realized that having top-level access is boring. There is ...
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1answer
129 views

Ecological implications of osmotic portals

Suppose some magical civilization on Earth-like planet can create portals. Any given portal entrances are spherical surfaces of the same radius. Any particle enters one sphere and exits another in the ...
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Ecological balance in a pleistocene+ world

So a friend is working on a worldbuilding/rpg project and I'm "beta-testing". He drew up an earth-like map and set the players start locations. Then I ask him about fauna. Will it be modern earth? ...