To me, a drakling is not the same as a hatchling. It's the second period in the development of a young dragon where their wings start to catch up in size proportionate with the body, and horns/spines/spikes start to grow in. (I describe my dragons as being hatched with wings, they're just tiny and fairly useless until the drakling stage). As the wings develop and approach a size capable of supporting flight, so does the hydrogen bladder (which serves to keep them lightweight and buoyant). As the hydrogen bladder grows to support flight and fire breathing abilities, the drake will start craving minerals such as flint and platinum to chew upon. These minerals will catch on the dragons teeth when chewed and spark the combustible hydrogen to produce fire. The flight and fire abilities are a binary system, both are made possible by the hydrogen bladder, the gases for which are produced by the dragons digestive system.
Dragon maturity (how I categorize it) goes as follows:
Drake/Draka- teenager (can fly, mineral cravings start)
Dragon/Dragoness- adult (full grown, breathes fire, can stay aloft for days)
When hatched, a dragon would be muted and dark (camouflage colors), in order to better hide and blend in with their home caves. Once they reach a safe size they would brighten up. For example Arrc here, as a 3 yr old drakling, is about the size of a big cat (lion, leopard, etc). He was hatched black and is now starting to turn white, from his belly up. He will be almost completely white as an adult, save a stripe of black running down his spine and over the top of his head.
It's a mythical creature so you can really make up whatever classifications for it that you want. Historically, "drake" is just another word for dragon, (they share the same root word, the greek drákōn) it doesn't necessarily imply anything about the amount of limbs or wings something has. Only recently has the word been used to refer to specific body layouts depending on the property/ip/book/rpg/franchise/etc. The layout you describe, with the front arms serving as wings, I hear more often applied to wyverns, (another kind of dragon from european folklore) but again, you can really call them whatever you like. There are no hard rules in folklore/mythology.
This is very interesting. So, in your thoughts, if a dragon breathes fire for too long/repeatedly and uses up a large ammount of hydrogen from their hydrogen bladder, will they be flightless until the used hydrogen is replaced? In my theory (because my way of looking at dragons anatomically and biologically is pretty similar to yours) depending on how much hydrogen is used up, it will start to inhibit the dragons flight ability. Thoughts?
And on topic: Your artwork is just stunning. The shading is perfect, and I love how the textures used on the skin flow accordingly with the pose. The pose, actually, reminds me of a playful feline.
Basically, the dragon wouldn't be entirely grounded, as they still have a pulmonary system and hollow bones like birds. They'd probably still be able to glide and achieve flight if jumping from a high surface, but powered flight from would be considerably more difficult.
intarasting. as i said befor idont think thats how fire breth worked. it seems natior wouldnt alow such a glairing flaw as having the flight blater and the fire fule being the same thing. if a dragon uses fire tomush than they cant fly. that seems like some thing that would get anuff dragones killed that it wouldevalve away. however if it was venom that undergose a chemical reaction like the bobadear bettal than even if it ran out of fire it could still fly away. did u come to ur fire theary on ur one or r u pareting what thay said on that 1 dragon speshal from histery chana..or was that animle planet. eather way id say fire venom makes more sents than seeking out a relitvly hard to comby minaral and beltching on its testh. aspeshaly sents that would coss mager damage to the teeth and gums . btw hes a mager cutie ^_^how big is he?
I like the hydrogen bladder theory as it also keeps them lightweight. And having the systems linked doesn't necessarily have to be a hindrance, as fire would mainly be a last resort anyway. Modern day predators get along just fine without such weapons. The dragon would still be able to fly if it ran out, powered flight would just be made more difficult, and gliding or jumping from a cliff would be an easier way to get airborne.
I'm not sure where I got the idea, as multiple sources have utilized it, not just the animal planet special. I like the idea of a fire gland too, and sometimes fuse both theories so that the dragon doesn't need to find minerals, but the fire is still reliant on the hydrogen. Perhaps the dragon doesn't need to find a catalyst for the hydrogen because it possesses an internal biological one?
yah with my venom theary i thought of how things like sodeom and asid combust when exposed to oxigen. they would exhail when spraying it like a spitting cobra. there breth would retard the chemical reaction so it didnt burn its nose. however if the venome or the hidrajin was the katalis to the other than that might work to. an old idea i had was it belched out methain and using electricity (like an eel)it coud creat a spark and ignight it like lighting a fart. hmmmm im definetly going to look more into flamable substances. part of my venom theary explains other things like the fleshy thing on the throt of Cocatrix and the missidetafide "brests" of a harpy. i also cam up with the idea of a substace that hardens like concreet but also paralises on contact that could explan the hole "terning people to stone" thing.