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Serious Question about the Biology of Florans

Discussion in 'Starbound Discussion' started by TheTimeWulf, Dec 1, 2016.

  1. TheTimeWulf

    TheTimeWulf Scruffy Nerf-Herder

    So I'm in Bio class for my grade, and the current discussion is cell types. I was considering the Floran race as an outlier (although they aren't real, lol), but I'm not sure.

    -Can Florans be considered as plants or animals? I'm assuming they are animals, as they require meat as a source of energy, but I've heard others discuss Florans using Photosynthesis.

    -If Florans are animals, would the growths of leaves and flowers be an imitation of plant matter on their bodies as skin and hair? Or am I overthinking this?

    -If they are plants, why do they eat meat? Plants don't use cellular respiration. Is eating meat just a hobby?

    -If they are both, how the heck does that work!?
  2. Lil' Mini

    Lil' Mini Phantasmal Quasar

    Well we have Venus Flytrap in real life, they trap and digest insects, I can't tell you why though, probably because they don't have such strong photosynthesis I guess...?

    So I guess it could be something like that, Florans are plants, but due to their evolved state, the photosynthesis doesn't produce the required energy in order to stay alive without food forever. This could mean that they could last longer without food though.
    TheTimeWulf likes this.
  3. Tamorr

    Tamorr Supernova

    They are a plant. No, not a hobby; but more likely it is so they could move without being grounded to a single spot. This has been discussed before to some extent, although in an older thread.

    It is like asking why a venus fly trap eats insects... Given enough evolution anything is possible, but not always readily understandable at first glance. There are still things on this very earth within biology that are mystery, or short there of. It is a continuous process of study after all.

    Is what I can think of off hand...
  4. MilkCalf

    MilkCalf Supernova

    Imo they sre plants that mimic meat based life forms. Thei are said to have meat so I'd guess they developed very humanlike bodyparts but from plant matter. Does that make sense? Plant and meat cells are already quite similar so I wouldn't see it as a big stretch.
  5. Starfeather

    Starfeather Phantasmal Quasar

    If I remember correctly, Venus Flytrap digests insects to get enough nitrogen that it can't get by itself, or something like that. Like Tamorr said, Florans most likely are plants that evolved in the way similar to animals in order to move around. Photosynthesis alone is insufficient in this case and they need to hunt in order to get enough energy, and probably also elements that photosynthesis does not produce, just like Venus Flytrap does.
  6. DraikNova

    DraikNova Ketchup Robot

    There are dozens of plants that move and/or eat animals and at least one slug that steal chloroplasts from seaweed to perform photosynthesis. So yeah, they could be walking, meat-eating plants. I mean, there are already palm trees that walk, and carnivorous plants have evolved independently in nine different cases.

    Personally, though, based on the immense variety in appearance and the plants they are made of, I'd say they're something like lichens: a fungal core with a symbiotic relationship with a plant (the plant performs photosynthesis to get energy for the duo, the fungus breaks food down to get materials). What if Florans start out as just a fungal base that adopts one or more plants into their biology, providing the Floran with energy and strengthening its primarily fungal skeletal structure with lignin*? It'd explain why Florans are scared of Agarans too. Imagine seeing a human without any skin..

    *Their bones are infused with lignin covering according to the fossil.
  7. STCW262

    STCW262 Heliosphere

    Considering that we don't get to see the Floran Homeworld, I guess that they could be like Poptops, or evolved similarly.
  8. Littleman9Mew2

    Littleman9Mew2 Zero Gravity Genie

    Everyone is missing the big question:

    What do they have for "blood"?
    TheTimeWulf likes this.
  9. Tamorr

    Tamorr Supernova

    Sap or similar I would think. After all most plants have a liquid flowing within them.
  10. YellowDemonHurlr

    YellowDemonHurlr Ketchup Robot

    If you want to look at the biology of florans with any degree of seriousness, you have to understand that no, they are not plants. They also are not animals. Plants and animals are distinct lineages of organisms that evolved on the planet Earth. Since florans did not evolve on Earth (as far as we know), they have no relation to any Earthly lifeforms. They have evolved convergent traits (the same trait, but evolved separately) with plants and animals because those traits are useful, but they belong to neither group.

    Of course, if you look at life in Starbound with any degree of seriousness, everything pretty much breaks down immediately (ape people and fish people and bird people and they're all humanoid? Come on...)
  11. SoopaDerpcat

    SoopaDerpcat Pangalactic Porcupine

    Any type of organism that can move and process data of its own accord is an animal; a plant is, by definition, planted. They're animals that have evolved several useful plant-like features, but they are still animals, scientifically speaking.
  12. YellowDemonHurlr

    YellowDemonHurlr Ketchup Robot

    Well, not really. Plants are by definition "multicellular eukaryotes of the kingdom Plantae" according to wikipedia. In non-scientific terms, this means they have more than one cell, have a particular cell structure, and trace their ancestry to a common species. Because of that last criteria, "plant" is only a useful category for life from Earth. Other planets may have organisms that are functionally equivalent, but they are not true plants and could have any combination of plant traits, non-plant traits, and traits not seen in any Earthly organism.
    MilkCalf likes this.

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