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It doesn't matter, you can have what you want anyway becasue you are talking about ALIENS they are not insects they are not mammals. You just need to layout what characteristics you want them to have and ask if THAT can evolve. You don't need to turn earth life in another form of earth life. It adds nothing unless you really want them to evolve from earth ...


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Extremely unlikely. Let's take a step back and analyze your question. Can an insect evolve to look and function like a mammal? What does it really mean? If an insect evolves into functioning like a mammal, that means it's filling a niche that was occupied by mammal-like creatures. So the real question is, what happened to those mammal-like creatures in ...


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Yes, the scientific term for this is convergent evolution. Proof of concept: Evolution gives us the steps to change an organism's phenotype/morphology into something else, even something that looks like organism that already exists. The key, is that organisms that gain some kind of advantage in reproduction or survival eventually replace all those that don'...


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GMO SF Magic! Have your creatures be the descendants of bioengineered insects. Space travelers visited Earth in the distant past, admired the insect life, and collected specimens which they bred / engineered into servants or food animals or warriors, or all of that. You could have an endoskeleton in the same way cephalopods have modified the molluscan ...


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So if I'm understanding your question correctly, you are asking whether or not a creature that originally had an exoskeleton can evolve to have an endoskeleton and other such features. Short answer, possibly. The reason such an evolutionary event did not take place on our world is that before such highly improbable evolutionary changes occurred, our ...


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Sorry, but no. Although these features are all present in different varieties of insects, you can not get them in one species. This is because the mechanism called "evolution" is actually devolution. You see, mutations (upon which evolution is based) are breakages of the genetic code. 99.99% of the time these cause still births, and are not passed on. ...


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This question makes a number of different assumptions, most of which are wrong. 1. The biggest, as covered by Slarty's answer, is that an alien species would even use the same pigments that Earth species use. It's a common misconception that evolution is a gradual progression to the most efficient solution to a problem. It's not. For a trait to exist ...


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Yes it’s all possible. But melanin probably wouldn’t be used by the aliens or at least probably wouldn’t be used for the same purpose. With a completely alien biogenesis and billions of years of randomly triggered evolution most of the biochemistry will likely be completely different. If the rain forest they evolved in is dark it would make sense that they ...


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I have found floating coral skeleton fragments while beachcombing, the largest perhaps 2-3 kilos. The coral polyps themselves were long gone, so the coral was "dead" but all four fragments I've found over the years had since been colonized by algae and gooseneck barnacles. I've never cut one open, but it's been theorized that these fragments had once been ...


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Keratin is highly resistant to stomach acids of humans, but some fungi can use keratin as a food source One way around this is to have a fermenting gut, like a cow, that employs these hair-eating microorganisms to pre-ferment the hair mass into something that can be digested. You could even extend this with cow's ability to chew its cud. Basically ...


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I got your amphibious reptile right here! Its a sea snake! http://theconversation.com/deep-breath-this-sea-snake-gathers-oxygen-through-its-forehead-122784 Only fish have gills, right? Wrong. Meet Hydrophis cyanocinctus, a snake that can breathe through the top of its own head. The 3m species, which is native to Australian and Asian coastal waters, ...


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This question made me smile, because I think there might actually be a tree on Earth that would stop a (lowish) caliber bullet. I cut down a Black Gum tree (Nyssa sylvatica) that was shading too much of a garden (no great loss; my land had thousands of trees.) I cut in into lengths to split for firewood. It was dense and somewhat harder to cut than most ...


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As an actual wood by itself with no special preparations, almost certainly not, cellulose is just too weak to do this by itself if we assume equivalent structure to real-world trees. Even the highest density woods (which are so dense they sink in water) aren't going to get you close to a proper anti-ballistic material like modern body armor provides. ...


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The simple answer is "No". Wood is based on cellulose, and cellulose has very low tensile strength, compared to "strong" materials like kevlar or steel. Cellulose-based materials just can't be "bulletproof" in a traditional sense (ex. to make wearable armor). However, plants in your world can potentially be made of other fibers. You can even have some ...


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There are examples of biological systems depositing glass (diatom skeletons, for instance). Glass fibers encased in lignin in between the cellulose fibers would greatly reinforce a high-density wood (like teak or boxwood). The result wouldn't be "bullet proof" any more than modern body armor is "bulletproof" -- but it would be bullet resistant in much the ...


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In order for this to work, the composition of your trees would have to be VERY different from those on earth. Even dense wood is not particularly good at stopping bullets. A handgun round will generally penetrate wooden boards as much as 2-3 inches thick, and high-velocity armor piercing rounds from sniper rifles will go through as much as a foot or more of ...


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Taxonomically speaking, the class of a living entity is usually determined by a common mode of reproduction. The class Reptilia is different from the class Mamalia and different from the class Amphibia primarily because amphibians (usually) deposit gel-encased eggs in bodies of water, reptiles (usually) produce leathery eggs that they bury, and mammals (...


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You basically just described the last common ancestor of reptiles and amphibians so yeah, absolutely possible. The only issue is that this would be an absolutely ancient species, or a living fossil type situation.


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They have mild telepathic/empathic power, evolved over the species history as a group survival trait. They have evolved to function as a smooth running community. Even without experiencing anothers troubles, they are still naturally empathic as a result, even extending the behavior towards humans. For your white hair who doesn't fit, maybe they have some ...


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Why is Humanity almost entirely composed of psychos? The Galactic Standard is to work in harmony, be kind and compassionate. By sheer grit and dodged cunning, Humankind managed to reach the stars despite killing each other over the drop of a hat. There is a threasure trove of histories like that in r/HFY If their worlds are docile, herbivores can grow ...


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I’m disinclined towards genetic engineering or eugenics as the cause. Well... Technically speaking I have idea for you. There are evolutionary ways to achieve that, apparently we run it Europe for half a millennia in pre-modern times. You just need to eliminate from gene pool each generations the most antisocial 1%-2% (and usually also low IQ individuals) ...


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Evolutionary Benifit Every single thing we do behaviorally is due to some benefit or quirk of evolution. In our species altruism and empathy exist because its a survival trait. Helping another member of your species for no personal gain is a highly valuable group survival behavior that benefits a species. In order for this to happen in a conscious and ...


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Individualism creates creativity- and unique approaches, while a hive mind moderates all wild attempts and moodswings into non-existance. Consider the borg- they are basically incapable of innovation, highly dependant on host species, which they antagonize, to develop theire technology for them.


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Collectivism, Zeal, & Ideology In order for your species to be 98% anything that isn't genetically decided, it would require a genetic predisposition to collectivism and zeal. Your species will dedicate itself 100% to whatever ideology, religion, or philosophy that is most beneficial at the time. This is beneficial to their survival and propagation as ...


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The squid people in Charles Stross' Neptune's Brood are perhaps a little like this. A brief quote from one of the characters who lives with them: They hacked their mirror neurons. And the uncinate fasciculus, whatever that is. There are no sociopaths among them: Everyone has an enhanced empathic sense. [snip] The fixed a lot of what's wrong with our ...


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They may be formed this way, if they live long and have only few child (as for genetical reasons, longevity and a shared choise to not overpopulate) this would also need relatively rich world (so no need for war over resources) also safe world (so they do not need care for sources, or predators/illness and so they do not have "spare" childs to cover loses ...


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Maybe the White Hair civilization is led by a small cabal who has instituted some kind of eugenics program centuries ago, aimed at breeding a docile, easily-controlled populace. They could still be in charge now, or perhaps they too ended up docile; such high empathy would be an attractive trait, so many of the ruling class may end up mating with the docile ...


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the names of plants and animals surely wouldn't be the same as we have Required reading: https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TranslationConvention Should a salmon-like fish simply be called a salmon, or should I come up with a new word for it? Required reading: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/CallARabbitASmeerp Beyond that, I don't ...


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Maybe You might be able to get away with this if your animal has a unique life cycle. For example, maybe it is dormant for long periods of time, and its burrowing consists of digging itself into the ground to the point where only its armoured, photosynthetic back is exposed. It waits for days, weeks, months, whatever, generating enough energy to keep a ...


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First of all - no any photosynteses: even here on Earth photosynthes is not an option for any animal. It would cover merely percents of animal energy (i.e. oxigen) needs. It is effective for plants because they do not move or actively pump anything. Mars has times lower solar energy on its surface compared to Earth. Plus it has those dust storms - they are ...


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I wonder if this creature may have some kind of gas absorbing gland or organ that prevents it before excretion or something - possibly even has another organ to release it in a different way - probably soundlessly (so maybe something that looks a little like a vent/gills?)


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The problem with supercriticality is that due to the circumstances under which it arises, you lose any clear distinction like "liquid/gas" as you might get at the surface of a conventional ocean. Instead, you get a smooth increase in density and viscosity from the gas phase bits of the atmosphere into the supercritical bits, like a fog that just gets thicker ...


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First of all: How advanced would any such life have to be to motivate a crewed expedition to the outer planets? Any life form of any type would motivate a crewed expedition - from the simplest, most basic cellular life on up. If we found any life on any celestial body, we would be thrilled. As for Europa, it has a fair amount of water, and an ...


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Are supercritical oceans of CO2 possible? That depends on how you define "ocean", but yes. Making them more liquid-like just requires a cooler environment, easily achieved with a Venus-like world that happens to be somewhat farther from its sun than Venus is. How would it behave? That depends on just exactly how liquid-like it gets. There are two not-very-...


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Well, Stephen L. Gillett thought so.... It's not really possible to give a definite yes-or-no answer to this, but it seems reasonably plausible. I haven't been able to find any data on the use of iron pentacarbonyl as a solvent itself, but it is soluble in most organic solvents (like ether and acetone) and slightly soluble in alcohols... so it seems ...


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The modification to prevent an organism from eructating or breaking wind (thus, avoiding the f**t word) is simple. Its microbiome would have to be highly efficient and was capable of consuming metabolic products that would tend to be gases. Therefore, its alimentary system wouldn't be producing gases in sufficient qualities for them to be expelled from its ...


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Here is a link to a post asking about the largest possible size for a giant serpent or worm: What theoretically is the limit or max size and length for a serpent/worm before they get crushed by their own body?1 You might want to consider how big you want your sandworms to be, because I can believe there should be a size range where they could move through ...


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How this could happen This is definitely possible. A simple way for a parasite to accomplish most of these changes (aside from telekinesis, which I don't think has any biologically plausible explanation) by modifying the DNA of the host, likely by introducing some retrovirus into the bloodstream to selectively modify the DNA of specific types of stem cells. ...


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I know its a little off from your original concept but if I were building a universe with something like that in it I would actually make it a purposeful mark, a tattoo of some description. If you wanted the species to be a repressed one then it would have been forced upon them by others wanting to identify their kind at a distance. If not then it would be ...


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Fluidized bed world. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=My4RA5I0FKs This guy was sitting on a hot tub full of sand. When gas jets underneath were turned on, he sank into the sand. This is called a fluidized bed. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluidized_bed A fluidised bed is a physical phenomenon occurring when a quantity of a solid particulate ...


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They are tattoos. This is the simplest explanation. The marks have cultural significance for the empath race and the tattoos are added as each individual achieves life goals. Your crew members are young and probably have only one or two. An elder of this race might have the tears circumferentially around her eyes. As regards why a tear - as they become ...


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1) Absolutely. From a biology perspective, try to imagine the role that an environment has on the process of evolution. Maybe there is an environmental or atmospheric reason that would mean that such an organism would NEED the protection of an advanced being. Perhaps there is a dominant predator that used to feed on the hosts of (previously docile) guest ...


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low gravity would certainly help. The less the better. But then comes the question of atmosphere: do not count for less than 1/3 of g to have atmosphere more than 1/10 of Earth. Mars with a magnetic field is a good candidate Atmosphere would matter a lot since worms need to breathe. You want low CO2 (<2%), much O2 (15-30%) and heavy atmosphere (due to low ...


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My take on this situation: the ‘teardrop’ is an essential, black, teardrop-shaped organ located on the Empath’s face. You could have the Empath have thinner skin, allowing the teardrop’s unique colour to be visible on its face as markings. The thinner skin could be somewhat permeable, like a frog’s, allowing fluids to blend into the bloodstream. This is ...


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If you're talking about combining DNA to produce viable offspring - not a chance. I've already gone over this in a similar question, so I'll just copy that part to here. The problem with this is that even if there is a mechanism for combining DNA arbitrarily, you can't plug bits of DNA into another species with a different evolutionary path and ...


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I wouldn't call it hard science, but this could be one possible approach, depending on what you mean by "impregnate".


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It really depends on how alien that "every and any" alien species may be. If they all depend on DNA for genetic information, it becomes more plausible (if still unlikely). This could even be extended DNA with five bases or more rather than the four we see on Earth. Then, feasibly, the impregnating alien could place an 'egg' of a sort inside the host ...


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Your species reproduces by attaching to any sperm and/or egg cells, but doing so like a virus which lays dormant in a lysogenic cycle. Viruses replicate using either the lytic cycle (where virus cells are produced very quickly and destroy the host cell), or the lysogenic cycle (where the viral DNA is implanted into the host cell which continues to reproduce ...


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