Questions tagged [mammals]

For questions about mammals as they evolved on Earth. This may include, but is not limited to, warm-bloodedness, the possession of fur, the ability to secrete milk, and the bearing of live young.

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How many languages would it take to unite the Mammal Kingdom?

The mammilia class is tired of just being a class. They want to be a kingdom. However the problem is: they can't communicate very well. The humans didn't want to give up their powerful syntax, but the ...
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7 votes
3 answers
783 views

These Primates Don't Look Like Primates. How to Fix Them

For years, I've been building and rebuilding an alternate Earth. The point of departure is 56 million years ago, when the hottest episode in the last 100 million years, the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal ...
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10 votes
1 answer
344 views

How to explain a reindeer's nose mimicking a police blinker light when it senses danger?

There is an odd species of creature with striking resemblance to a reindeer called Rudolphie, it has a red hue on its nose due to constant exposure to the cold condition of Arctic tundra and being ...
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14 votes
7 answers
3k views

What would a bear species isolated on an island look like?

In a science-fiction story that I am writing, there is a species of bears that only live in a specific oceanic island. They are the descendants of American black bears (Ursus americanus). They are my ...
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2 votes
2 answers
261 views

Could my Adnaps exist?

I imagined a hypothetical mammalian species of the Cetartiodactyla order and of the Ruminantia suborder: adnaps. They are the opposite of giant pandas: if giant pandas are vegetarian carnivores (they ...
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1 vote
1 answer
169 views

How will these mammal-bugs retain their bug-like features?

As a sequel to my first question, I have decided to ask another! Let's say, that these bugs have evolved to look completely like a mammal. Fur, skin, eyes, etc. What about their internal biology could ...
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30 votes
9 answers
8k views

How soon can we realize that we stopped aging?

One night a meteor impact occurred over the Pacific and a strange green glow sweeps across the entire globe, in that moment our body can no longer age in fact this phenomenon seems to only affect ...
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4 votes
7 answers
354 views

How Can a Mammal Be Green and Blue? (No Camo, Please!)

This picture is of a horselike mammal drawn for an alternate Earth project that I've been working and reworking on for years. The drawing itself--and the coloring--was done by the DeviantArtist "...
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3 votes
1 answer
136 views

Reptilians shoulder/arm flexibility

I wanted to put some reptilian races in my world, but I'm not sure how to give them the arms needed to hold weapons. From what I can tell, reptiles don't have flexible shoulders like mammals, which is ...
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1 vote
2 answers
170 views

What would mammalian dinosaurs look like? [closed]

Here's a crazy idea: What if there were mammals that were designed similarly to dinosaurs? Similar proportions, similar accessories, maybe even similar size... I was thinking of species to add to my ...
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8 votes
2 answers
691 views

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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1 vote
1 answer
106 views

Ivory Headgear--Likely or Not?

My apologies for not giving you a larger image, but it does show you a compare-and-contrast on what horn is in comparison to what antler is. Basically, it's just a piece of bone covered in softer ...
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3 votes
3 answers
93 views

Would a Longer PETM Save the Creodonts and the Mesonychians?

Some 55.8 million years ago, Earth underwent a really dramatic heat wave known as the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, or PETM. What happened, exactly? We don't know how it happened, but we do know ...
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4 votes
1 answer
122 views

Could Meridiungulates Colonize The World Before the Opening of Panama?

The last time I asked something similar, I asked if it would be possible for xenarthran mammals (armadillos, sloths and anteaters) to be thrown off of South America from life-giving rafts to other ...
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2 votes
2 answers
92 views

Could an Ice Age Extinction Wipe Out All Marsupials?

Say the word "Australia", and one of the first things to come to your mind would be the marsupials. Of the 334 species of pouched mammals whose earliest ancestors witnessed the fall of the dinosaur ...
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5 votes
2 answers
246 views

The Serina Series: Episode I: Cats

"Serina" is a popular speculative evolution project in which, apart from a long list of fish, invertebrates and plants, the only terrestrial chordate to colonize this terraformed moon is the canary. ...
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2 votes
1 answer
189 views

How Would the Multituberculates Survive Longer Than in Our Timeline?

In exploring likely candidates for an alternate Earth without rodents, someone suggested multituberculates to me. Here's a little summary as to who the multituberculates were for anyone not in the ...
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3 votes
2 answers
114 views

Would the Muroid Niche Be Occupied by Just One Clade?

The muroids are a superfamily of rodents consisting today of mice, rats, voles, hamsters, lemmings and gerbils. There are at least 1750 different species of them, proof apparent of their ...
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2 votes
3 answers
175 views

Mammal evolving spider-silk

I wanted to include a spider-like race in my book (not a typical drider, but more like a hairy hominid covered in tarantula-like hair and thinner and longer limbs and fingers). However, I wanted them ...
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2 votes
4 answers
156 views

How Would a Merpanther Hunt?

Allow me to present the Brethmechin, a creature of Indonesian mythology. The Book of Creatures website has drawn it as some kind of felid that has adapted for complete marine hunting, rather like the ...
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10 votes
3 answers
2k views

Could Cats Add Lots of Plants to Their Diet?

Because nature is never straightforward, there are different levels of carnivores. On the lowest rung of the ladder are the hypocarnivores, in which meat can't take any more than 30% of their caloric ...
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23 votes
11 answers
6k views

The Red-Headed Whale. Why Would the Head be Red?

In the waters of Iceland, the natives have their own word for a particular brand of cetaceans--"Illhveli", literally "evil whales". And the bloodthirstiest of them all is ...
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3 votes
4 answers
273 views

The Fate of Marsupials in a More Southerly Australia

For the longest time, Australia and Antarctica were one and the same. It wouldn't be until 30 million years ago that Australia broke up from Antarctica. Nowadays, the distance between Australia and ...
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6 votes
2 answers
215 views

Perissodactylian Cetaceans

Perissodactyla is an order of mammals consisting currently of the seventeen species of horses, rhinoceroses and tapirs. Usually, any clade is connected by a coupling of genetics and physical ...
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13 votes
8 answers
1k views

Can an insect evolve to look and function like a mammal?

I'm working with this alien race that looks and functions essentially like a mammal - skin, muscles, hair, internal bones, large size, etc. - but evolved from an insect or other bug. They're a large, ...
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6 votes
1 answer
312 views

Could Bear-Dogs Look and Act Like Actual Bears?

Back home, Amphicyonidae (bear-dogs) predated Ursidae by only four million years. While the latter still lives in the form of eight species, the former had been extinct for two-and-a-half million ...
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12 votes
15 answers
4k views

If I have an Earth-like world with Earth-like fauna, and I want brightly-colored mammals, what would be a realistic way of causing that to evolve?

On Earth, while birds and reptiles can be quite brightly colored, it's rare for mammals to have any bright colors, and the rare times they do, it's either just slightly different (like with orangutans)...
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5 votes
2 answers
252 views

Can a Mammal Develop a Jaw Shaped Like a Beak?

Many mythological creatures have a popularity secondary only to the dragon (the one true global force.) Among them is the griffin, a half-bird-half-cat cut-and-paste. Now, in an alternate Earth, the ...
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4 votes
3 answers
211 views

Wolves and Hyenas--Allies For Life

In recent years, we have found evidence in the Negev Desert of the Middle East of a striped hyena, a solitary carnivoran, tagging along with a pack of wolves. This sort of alliance is found nowhere ...
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-1 votes
3 answers
143 views

Pinniped Creodonts

Here is all you need to know about the creodonts: They were a group of carnivorous mammals that, despite having carnassials, had no relation to Carnivora. They were a global force, occupying ...
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2 votes
2 answers
121 views

Can Owl Ears Instead of Echolocation Guarantee Life in Cave Colonies?

In an alternate Earth, there are no bats. Instead, there are "flying monkeys" (which are actually lemuriform primates, rather like bushbabies or lorises.) And even though they have batlike ears, ...
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7 votes
3 answers
3k views

Can an animal produce milk all the time?

So as most of you probably know, cows don't produce milk all year round for no reason, they need to be pregnant and then you gotta do something with the calves… Now in my story that has an ecosystem ...
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23 votes
4 answers
2k views

What is the bio-mechanical plausibility of a fox with venomous fangs?

For context, I've been working on a fantasy race for use in a science fiction novel, the gist of which is essentially a red fox that has had its genes manipulated by a supernatural force with the ...
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  • 231
2 votes
5 answers
415 views

Can a mammal and Oviparous have child together if they have similar external body structure?

There are two humanoid races are in my fantasy story. Race A is almost like humans, except they are in super human size, have super human strength, have a higher body temperature etc. Some sort of ...
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  • 237
6 votes
3 answers
397 views

How to produce milk that's similar to blood?

How could a mammal produce milk which resembles blood? The blood milk should keep as many properties of milk as possible, curding for example, while resembling blood as much as possible. The mammal ...
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9 votes
2 answers
675 views

Anatomically Correct Swarm of Rodents

Rats are commonly associated with illness and disease due to the role they played in The Black Death. However, some works of fiction portray rats as carnivorous swarms, devouring people ...
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9 votes
2 answers
208 views

Could Xenarthrans Be Ferried Outside South America?

Right from the beginning, the xenarthrans--armadillos, sloths and anteaters--have been at a disadvantage. For the longest time, their home was an island continent, which made them extremely ...
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6 votes
8 answers
416 views

Could a medium sized mammal in the order carnivora evolve to be bipedal?

In the movie Guardians of the Galaxy (and a few others), we meet a bipedal raccoon known as Rocket (who I am aware did not evolve to be bipedal, but I am using him as an example). I honestly love the ...
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3 votes
4 answers
367 views

Which Modern Mammals Would Die Out in an Alternate Extinction Event 5 Million Years Ago? [closed]

Five million years ago, a progressive downward slope in the global climate put an end to the Miocene Epoch and brought on the Pliocene Epoch. To get a visual idea, since we humans are a visual ...
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15 votes
6 answers
6k views

How could a female member of a species produce eggs unto death?

As far as I am aware, female mammals cannot produce eggs (as in ova) after a certain age/maturation. How could the female produce eggs for an unlimited amount of time, resulting in a 'queen' mammal ...
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7 votes
2 answers
298 views

What circumstances would ensure that hybrid species of frankencats are produced in the wild naturally?

I am a mad scientist with an intelligence matching Albert Einstein and Steven Hawking, and plan to create a new species of animal. After watching Napeoleon Dynanite, widely considered by critics to be ...
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9 votes
5 answers
751 views

Hippotragine Antelopes: A Suitable Alternative For Actual Horses?

The hippotragines are a small subfamily of antelopes that bear physical resemblance to horses. There are three separate genera--Hippotragus, Oryx and Addax. As grazers, rather than browsers, the "...
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13 votes
7 answers
3k views

Would it be possible for mammals to evolve blue blood?

Ever since I found out about the green blooded skink, I have wondered if it's possible for other blood colours to evolve among vertebrates, specifically blue in mammals.
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1 vote
3 answers
416 views

Whale-Tail and Seal-Legs in One Animal

In marine mammals, there are two different body types for two different niches: A long, strong tail for all-marine whales... ...and all four legs modified into flippers for pinnipeds that feed in ...
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-2 votes
2 answers
277 views

I want to steal a dolphin from captivity and release him in open water. What do I need to know? [closed]

I don't actually want to do this, but I'm writing a story and I'd like it to be scientifically accurate. A marine biologist will be doing the heist, so any advanced and cool knowledge is welcome.
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0 votes
4 answers
455 views

Is the evolution of my aliens realistic?

So, I have thought about the evolution of my aliens and how they could evolve things like lactation but still retain their reptilian characteristics. Here is my best thought about it so far: ...
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4 votes
2 answers
2k views

How powerful a bow would be needed to kill this lion

In this land, similar to late medieval Europe/North Africa, there are a species of very large lions, a little larger than the prehistoric American Lion, with an average weight of 500 to 600 kg, that ...
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  • 1,579
14 votes
2 answers
1k views

How plausible would a fully aquatic bat be?

So, it turns out that bats are actually pretty good swimmers; several species of bats have been reported swimming, and they're far more capable and agile in the water than they are on land: https://...
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1 vote
5 answers
282 views

Can Pinnipeds Fit in a Worm Forest?

In an alternate Earth, coral has been extinct for over 400 million years. In their place were the following: Bivalvia (clams, oysters, mussels) Cirripedia (barnacles) Canalipalpata (bristle-foot or ...
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10 votes
4 answers
620 views

Could a cow produce bottled milk?

Could a cow produce bottled milk? The answer is, of course, no; there is no way a cow could do that; obviously. Perhaps I should be more clear on what I'm asking. Is there any way a mammalian ...
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