Tlaquanaru 001

Stanton

Joined February 2008

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<a href="http://avancna.deviantart.com/art/Tlaquanaru-00...">B&W Lines</a>
Name: “Imperial Armorfish” or “Red Emperor”
Length: 19’ to 32’ (6m to 10m)
Weight: up to 2 tons (2,000 kg)
Species: <I>Panoplichthys imperator</i>
Population: estimated 20 million
Notes: The Imperial Armorfish is among the most famous animal species of Tlaquanaru. Red Emperors occupy an ecological niche very similar to the one occupied by the Terran Great White Shark (<I>Carcharodon carcharias</I>), preying on a tremendous variety of fish and other marine animals, primarily other panoplichthyids, such as its blind relative, the Triceratops fish, <i>Typhlochimaera triceratops</I>, depicted in the picture. One must remember, however, that while <I>P. imperator</i> is an important predator, it is not an apex predator, as the larger nesodragons are its only predator (aside from other imperial armorfish). In fact, <I>P. imperator</i>‘s 90 million year fossil record suggests that it was never an apex predator, as, before the nesodragons arose 40 million years ago in Tlaquanaru’s oceans, the red emperors lived in the shadow of the 20 m long <I>Regiopanoply tyrannus</I>.
Morphology: Being panoplichthyid eupanoplids, red emperors have heavily armored heads and thoraces, and semi-armored tails. Their brilliant red coloration is actually camouflage, as most tend to live in the bathyal and abyssal zones (during the day), where red light can not penetrate. Uncoincidentally, red emperors have keen color vision which allows them to detect luminescent prey, including those that utilize red light.
Males tend to be larger than females, though many of the larger females are much larger than the smallest males. The best way to differentiate between the genders, instead, is through examination of the pelvic feelers, as males have much longer and larger feelers than females’.
The female will carry her fertilized eggs within an eggcase inside of her uterus for about 2 years, until she gives birth to about 20 to 100 goldfish-sized pups. One must remember, however, that this fecundity is actually illusionary, as these 20 to 100 pups are out of 5,000 to 50,000 fertilized eggs, and of these 20 to 100, on average, 2 to 5 pups will live past age 10.

Name: “Triceratops Fish”
Length: 1 to 4 meters
Weight: up to 300 kilograms
Species: <I>Typhlochimaera triceratops</i>
Population: Unknown
Notes: By comparison, very little is known about the Triceratops fish beyond the fact that it is a predatory panoplichthid eupanoplid, and that it has no functional eyes. It has been observed using its horn to root and plow through the mud for prey, however.

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