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The Diversity of Turtiformes



Since Jonas ( :iconzippo4k: ) uploaded a massive and spectacular Snaiadi piece just minutes ago, it is now my turn to submit something, I guess. Jonas' work is an educated masterpiece that clearly shines with his Zoology studies, so PLEASE give it a look at [link]

Most Snaiadi "land vertebrates" bear four feet with two digits each. But lurking below the feet of the megafauna are the remnants of a bygone era, the polydactyls. Polydactyls have the multitudinous feet of their earlier ancestors bundled into legs and hydraulic muscles allright, but the ends of their limbs remain "unbuckled" as a profusion of digits.

There are a variety of polydactyls, but a single group among them stands out for evolutionary success and a mind-boggling distribution scheme. These are the Turtiformes, named so due to their superficial resemblance to Earth's turtles. Turtiformes do have a hump of hollow, wood-like hardened tissue, but they cannot retract their heads anywhere. Mostly they are slow, dim-witted omnivores that occupy generalist niches.

Natatryx is a typical Turtiform, at home on land or sometimes even water in the broad plains of the main continents.

Ejector, at a size comparable to a Pilates ball, is a much more conspicuous plains dweller that defends itself by aggressively vomiting a modified form of genital secretion that also serves to blind and confuse potential predators.

Cylindroides is one of the few marine Turtiformes known, with a length approaching two meters. They do not even return to land to breed, instead ejecting their torpedo-like young directly from their first (genital) heads.

Asaptoderma and related forms belong to an unique clade of Turtiformes that have an insane distribution pattern. Out of all places, it is found in the isolated world of evolutionary madness that is Thalassia. Its relatives live on Aucaterra, Mapag and smaller Eastern ocean islands, but not the mainland. The trouble is, Echinomochlid Turtifurmes like Asaptoderma are older than Thalassia, geologically speaking. So, at some point in the past, their relatives must have accomplished a monumentally lucky feat of trans-oceaning rafting, before dying out in the mainland, perhaps due to competition from more "normal" turtiformes.
For more on these places, see the Snaiadi map here:

This unknown "turtiform Flood" event hit many islands, including the "lost world" of Mapag in the Aarite Ocean. There, the turtiformes gave rise to their nastiest lineage, the aptly-named Rape Turtles. In absence of any other competent predator, these clumsy creatures evolved into a "garage-kit macropredator" that eerily recalls the Fuckers (see [link] ) of the mainland. Instead of the swift killing grace of these unrelated predators, however, Rape Turtles are extremely clumsy and messy predators, painfully rasping their prey to death with the skid-like growth under their hips, as well as the spikes on their feeding (second heads.) Fortunately, their main prey are equally cumbersome Moai Landblumbomen, so the cycle of life goes on in Mapag, albeit in a ridiculous manner.

Last-minute FAQ:

1-Those things are NOT penises.
2-I am not a pervert.
3-Thanks for watching and commenting!
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VintageTrilobite90's avatar

what does the "asapto" in "asaptoderma" mean?

I know that derma means "skin"