Planet Twylo

Chapter Six: Marine Zoology:

Twylo's oceans are filled with a variety of animal life. Among these are various forms of fish, soft bodied creatures, as well as those with shells. Also included are many microscopic life forms, most of which serve as a food source for the larger aquatic life forms.

Shelled Creatures

Some shelled creatures remain from Twylo's past. Among the shelled creatures is a circular shaped animal with a soft underbelly, named the Enolaba. The Enolaba lives near the surface in shallow waters, where the temperature will vary just a few degrees from one season to the next. It can be found near rock ledges and reefs, and often moves from place to place, feeding on the microscopic particles floating freely in the water. The average weight of an adult is 2-3 kgs., with sizes ranging from 6-10 centimeters in diameter. It is orange in color.

Other shelled forms include the Ostraca (an animal with ten eyes and a long tail which lives on the bottom of the ocean and feeds on plant matter), and the Aporu, a small and sharply spined animal which swims freely through the water without fear due to its built-in defense mechanism.

Soft Bodied

This group evolved, primarily, from a group of hard shelled creatures who had tossed aside their cumbersome shells in favor of a more streamlined, flexible body type. This group includes eel and snake-like animals.

The Geadilo and the Spollega are both much like a snake, in that they have scales, no fins, and very flexible spinal columns. The Geadilo is dark in color and can reach a length of 1.5-2 meters in length, and a diameter of 10 centimeters, while the Spollega is varied in color and is much smaller, reaching a mature length of only .5-1 meter and a diameter of only 2-3 centimeters. The Geadilo is carnivorous, its diet consisting primarily of small fish-type animals, while the Spollega eats mostly plant material.

Fish Type Forms

Twylo's fish population gives further evidence of evolutionary forces. All fish evolved from animals which once had little or no ability for freedom of movement. The fishes' fins enable them to move freely through the water, swimming against the current, evading predators, searching for food.

One of the fish type forms found on Twylo is the Hirpod. It grows to a mature length of 2 meters, weighs 10-15 kgs., and has a scaleless silver colored skin. This predatory "fish" is long and slender, with two dorsal and two pectoral fins, as well as one located on each side near the head. Some of its fins are yellow and green in color. It has the characteristic teeth of a predator, long and sharply pointed, which are used for the tearing of flesh. It inhabits the colder water areas of Twylo. Other fish forms are the much more numerous and docile Gonosto (a plant eater), and the Silurus, a bottom dwelling creature with antennae it uses to find its food in the vast, dark recesses of Twylo's oceans.

Microscopic Life

The microscopic ocean life on Twylo is the least noticeable, but the most important of all. It is also the one group of animals that probably has not evolved very far from where they started.

This group is composed of a great number of animal life forms that are suspended in the water at various depths, generally no further down than 180 meters. These microscopic, single-celled animals are extremely important due to the fact that they serve as a food source for many larger animals, who in turn supply food for still larger animals. They float in the upper layers and are carried throughout the oceans by the strong currents. Without them, the food chain in the oceans would be completely disrupted.

Chapter Seven: Twylo's Aquatic Ecology


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