New answers tagged

0

Medusa (and gorgons in general) have been depicted with many other traits, such as a snaky belt, brass claws, tusks, wings, and scales Turning people to stone is impossible without magic While true snake hair wouldn't be plausible, it would be quite plausible to use symbiosis. Specifically, the snakes could entwine themselves in the gorgon's thick hair to ...


0

One of the major issues with griffins is that they generally have wings alongside 4 legs. The easiest solution to this issue is to pick a different depiction There are 2 ways to make a griffin without resorting to hexapodalism: Wingless Griffin This would be a griffin without wings. One way this could evolve is by starting out with a primitive monotreme of ...


1

You cannot have an organism entirely made up of one element (classical or modern). However, you could base your elementals on their earlier definitions, that being creatures adapted to dwell only in their own element A fire elemental could be easily explained by an alternative chemistry: Specifically, they would use molten sodium chloride in place of water. ...


1

This Sea-Boar is an Odontocete Specifically, they could be a sort of digging whale, with an elongated upper jaw adapted to dig through sediment like a pig's nose. This would allow them to find burrowing animals and eat them. They could also supplement their diet with sea-grass, with the teeth of the lower jaw opposing a hard plate in the palate which acts ...


0

Maxilla and mandible like in arthropods, etc. As illustrated in this article about the movie Predator, this is an iconic design for an alien face (pretty common - I remember a poodle with this design in a movie somewhere...). Insects and other arthropods have two pairs of specialized legs turned into upper and lower jaws. Humans can have something similar ...


5

To understand why something would become eusocial, you first need to understand what is eusociality (reference enter link description here) and why lepidopterans are not presently. Cooperative brood care- in many species, such as ants and bees, the young require special care to ensure their survival that takes dedicated effort over long periods of time. ...


0

This has been an interesting thought experiment, below are four semi-solutions which you can possibly build off of. They evolved that way "takes place some million years in a future Earth" Millions of years is a long time especially more so for species with a shorter reproductive cycle. Humans, in our current iteration, have only been around for ...


1

The Island Rule states that on islands large animals become smaller and smaller animals become larger. So elephants on an island would become smaller and rodents would become larger.


0

The prehistoric breakup of the supercontinent Gondwana separated the Madagascar–Antarctica–India landmass from the Africa–South America landmass around 135 million years ago. Madagascar later split from India about 88 million years ago during the late Cretaceous period allowing plants and animals on the island to evolve in relative isolation.[26] https://en....


0

Webbed feet that mimic the movement of jellyfish! Zygodactyl webbed-feet certainly don’t can’t be used to swim the normal way. Instead we’ll have to use a bit of trickery with water physics. The foot in the water paddles each time creating a small pocket of pressure inside the webbed toes. This then pushes the water-parrot forward using up less energy ...


1

I'm not even sure their feet would have to change much. Add some webbed toes (like flippers) and you should be good. Propulsion can be provided by wings. I would assume the parrots' feathers would need to become more waterproof. Finally, their bones would need to be heavier so they can dive more easily. And there you have it: it's a duck that looks like a ...


11

It's a well known phenomenon called chromatophorism. Rudolph's nose is externally the normal color, but when sensing danger or otherwise aroused, the nose is flared to increase airflow and sensitivity; engorged with blood, the nose swells in time with the heartbeat, and the internal layers get exposed. They do not actually emit light, but they do contain a ...


0

I recommend checking out the popular 90's book series Animorphs (by K.A. Applegate) for ideas on how to depict physical transformation back and forth from human to animal, and how to frame world-building around these themes. Generally speaking, The "Animorphs" conceal their identity as "normal" youth so no one knows they're the "...


0

bake-kitsune, bake-danuki, nekomata, and kawauso (which you don't mention but which I include for the sake of comprehensiveness), all hold in common the trait of being 'bakemono'. They are a categorization of yokai, which implies that they are spiritual beings created through a combination of allure and calamity (i.e. misfortunate occurence). In short, they ...


3

You work with what you have got. Thanks to my associate Mushi for illustrating the concept. Your creature has perfectly good appendages. It evolves hands from its feet. Where do you think our hands came from?


2

The tentacles that release enzymes will probably grow larger and more muscular, to allow it to pin down prey. Over time, they would evolve into arms on it's face. Things don't normally just evolve. They need precursors. The only easy to evolve into arms are those tentacles, so they will have to do.


5

No vertebrate had evolved a new limb for the entirety of 400 million years of their (limbs) existence. They have only changed their function or were lost. A limb is too complex of an organ, requires a lot of pre-existing stuff (bones, muscles, etc) to evolve this late in the evolutionary timeline. So your creature really has only three options here: Just ...


4

What this creature needs is a path where the future hands are always useful. Probably start with the studs. You don't have any on its front, you should put some there. Once they are there, the creature can start using them. First off, it could use them to bump into things. Knock down fruit from trees and the like. Once it's in the habit, having groves ...


3

Plants and fungi are more closely intertwined than most people realize. Most plants have strands of fungi, called mycorrhizae, growing on their roots in a mutualistic relationship. The fungi increase the plant's access to water & minerals, and in turn take nutrition from the plants. (The associations can be much more complex than this, too: the ...


3

Vegetarian sundew. https://www.cpukforum.com/forum/index.php?/topic/61472-vegetarian-sundew/ Vegetarian sundews: Few people know, that carnivorous plants like also vegetarian diet, as long as it is rich in protein like flower pollen. To show this, we fed fresh stamens of a Sarracenia leucophylla with adhering pollen to four different Drosera species (photos)...


8

Not predatory, parasitic. The picture above is from a plant called Cuscuta racemosa. The thing that makes this plant interesting is that, despite being a plant, this thing is an obligatory parasite, aka it can't survive on its own, and must feed on the sap of other plants in order to survive. Truth is that when it comes to plants, predator prey ...


1

the only multicellular lifeforms on this world are plants and fungi neither of them is mobile, and carnivorous plants on Earth evolved to integrate their element supply by feeding on mobile targets. The only "predatory" style that plants might evolve in your case is to prey on other plants, in the sense that their seeds, carried by wind or water, ...


3

Selective breeding Without using future technologies we can already do a lot. Our breeding programs are a great example. Look at things like pumpkins and corn. The wild versions in most cases don't have their edible parts as big as the cultivated ones. Or look at animals. Horses, cows and dogs. We have created a large variety of impressive specimens. There's ...


0

While evolution can make an arachne-like creature, you'd need to involve some design for a true, lone spiderhuman Firstly, the human and spider parts will need to be connected together. The most common way to do this in most depictions is for the human part above the legs to be set into the spider's face above the chelicerae. This seems like a good basis ...


1

TL;DR: Evolution would eventually solve any potential problem by your population evolving not to reproduce with the immortal. Let’s assume for the sake of the argument that the answer to your question is yes, i.e., the immortal would stagnate its species population. Then, on the long run, the tendency to mate and reproduce with the immortal (and possibly its ...


1

TL;DR: There will be some, but it will depend a lot on the initial situation. MWoT Answer: Your ageless immortal is merely ageless. While that might eliminate some diseases that are caused by old age, it may not eliminate diseases by outside factors, nor will it prevent accidents, illness, and predation from taking their life. And make no mistake, ...


1

You don't need to look very far for a real life example. Only a few thousand years ago you could (with some minor humping over ice and a brief swim) walk the majority of the way around the planet from South Africa to the southern tip of South America, from 68 degrees South to 77 degrees North. Even considering only the present day, Africa/Eurasia forms what ...


2

Very little One immortal, permanently fertile individual is genetically equivalent to a long line of heavily inbred relatives, without personally experiencing signs of inbreeding. Families that breed repeatedly with the immortal across generations may experience decreased genetic variability which in turn would probably be selected against due to recessive ...


1

First of all, the phrasing "evolutionary march" implies that evolution is a goal-oriented process, which it is not. Evolution does involve random drift, and removing old individuals does reduce that. But to the extent that there is a consistent "fitness", removing an individual just because it's old doesn't help that. Why would it? Why ...


6

An immortal could certainly have an impact on the gene pool if they lived long enough and had enough descendants. Genghis Khan, who lived between the 1100s and 1200s, is believed to be the ancestor of roughly about 16 million men in the modern-day, and he only lived to be about 60 or 70. I'm certain that, with enough partners, a person could easily share ...


3

Ambergris is an oily substance created in the digestive system of sperm whales, possibly to aid in passing hard objects in their food. It is apparently flammable though more in the way candle wax is flammable as opposed to being explosive. It is not uncommon for naturally evolving creatures to produce useful substances. Formic acid gets it's name from ants ...


7

Try playing with a population genetics simulation This simulation is pretty and very intuitive, working with red and white fish. Your immortal counts as a "migration rate" (except in his case, all the migrants are the same fish). If you set the simulation to a minimum migration rate (0.1) of fish of a different color, in a few hundred generations ...


4

No. The evolutionary process -- offspring adapting randomly and the ones with beneficial mutations surviving more often to pass on those mutations -- is not damaged by the existence of one immortal member. What happens is the rest of the species breeds and evolves as normal, and the immortal stays the same through the generations. If the species evolves too ...


1

A different kind of lactation. Fat can be rendered into an oil, which can be rather flammable, and mammals have a rather handy form of fat storage and processing and fluid dispensation already. I'm not entirely sure what exact conditions would lead to a mammal evolving to lactate a highly calorie-dense oil-like form of liquid fat instead of milk, like ...


20

The answer to this question depends upon a number of factors: The population of the species. With a small population, the immortal individual makes up a larger fraction of the gene pool than if the population is large, and therefore it has a greater influence upon the genetic makeup of future generations. Whether the immortal individual can die from ...


3

Savannah Elves The elves are descended from an arboreal omnivorous species of forest-dwelling elf-monkeys. Being omnivorous the monkeys could eat fruits and seeds but not leaves, twigs or grass. They also ate small mammals, eggs, insects and such. Their sharp teeth were good for eating meat and sufficient for eating everything else. They did not for example ...


4

Pure carnivory is uncommon, and its rapid evolution needs a special reason Six percent of a wolf's diet is plant matter and berries. Here's a cute video of a crocodile eating a pumpkin. Here's a (self-described) review of the top seven vegan dog foods. Also, at least thinking of land mammals, to be a "carnivore" means to tear indiscriminately at ...


2

Humans tend to eliminate, or at least marginalise, predators in territory they control as a matter of calorie competition removal. This leaves a number of potential carnivore niches that aren't filled in our modern world because we maintain pressure to keep them closed. However if the dominant hominids were as evolutionarily advanced, and shared our aversion ...


5

Your elves look a lot like bears, with the only difference that they are not plantigrade (which explains also their agility and endurance). I therefore guess that similar evolutionary pressures and circumstances which lead to the evolution of bears could, if applied to an early ancestor from the hominid branch, lead to the development of your elves. In ...


5

Lack of vegetable/fruit matter foods for long enough would do the trick when it comes to making them more carnivorous, probably due to desertification or something along that line making their native habitat worse to live in for herbivores or omnivores. They'll likely be scavengers for a while before moving on to more aggressive predatory behaviour and ...


1

Yes living things can survive being exposed to space, but navigating is much more difficult. As you probably know by now, Tardigrades (moss piglets) are microscopic bacteria eating critters that can survive extremely well in harsh conditions. They hibernate through the hard times in a pretty much dead state like a dried raisin, this process is called ...


2

It wouldn't want to live on land. Not because Octopuses couldn't evolve to live on land. They totally could. But, because your surface temperature is as high as the maximum average temperature ever on earth. and your gravity is enough to crush people. They'll be much happier in the oceans, where they don't need to support their bodies, and they're out line ...


3

Snail style Let us think of body plans. The main issue with living on land is not drying out. Did any relatives of the octopi manage that? https://kaiserscience.wordpress.com/2018/05/01/mollusk-family-tree/ Depicted: snail, nautilus (both from Wikipedia) Snails are second cousins to the cephalopods. They have a mollusc body plan and protect themselves ...


Top 50 recent answers are included