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The ''vertebrate'' tree of life

By PeteriDish
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I was kinda forced to slightly alter my general idea about this branch of the tree, I had to replace or alter most of the names, but, what the hell, right? I think this basic branching is mostly final, and i'll only have to focus on the branching of each of those "twigs" in the future.

I have only used pictures that I have already uploaded as examples of each group to make it easier for you to get an idea how the basic body plans came to be =).

information about each of the groups comming soon

Sugerata (Suction-feeders, from lat. "sugerare" - "suck in")
Common name: thumbfishes
Small, thumb-sized, barrel-shaped primitive organisms, eyes not yet evolved, only sensitive pigment spots are present.
They have an incomplete gut, simple stomach and an unpaired gill pouch.
Only one posterior fin is present, no radulla, no beak, no tentacles, there is only a tube-like mouth on the rear end of the animal.
They use jet propulsion with one intake on the headand the "exhausts" on the belly for movement.

Macerata ("Chewers")
Common name: Pseudosquishes
Generally bigger than Sugerates, ovoid in shape, they have two stomachs, one for mechanical and one for chemical processing of food, they got named after their "maceration stomach" which substitues oral cavity of earth's vertebrates. This sack-like organ is filled with small triangular teeth and can compress and inflate to chew the food. These animals still feed by sucking food particles and small animals in their throats, but they can process bigger food items than Sugerates.
They have simple eyes, complete gut and a paired gill pouch. They use jet propulsion with one intake and three "exhausts" for movement.
They have no jaws but have three tentacles around the oral opening. the displayed species have fin-like extensions on the tentacles for increased stability.

Eognatha (From lat. Eo - ealy and greek "gnathos" - jaw, meaning "early jaw")
Common name: Squishes
They do, indeed, evolved originally parrot-like beaks, but the recent species have evolved their jaws into a variety of shapes, the most striking examples are probably sported by the deep-sea species which have venus-flytrap-like mouths with long spindly teeth-like projections.
They differ from their predecessors in three important ways. Their jaws moved further forward in front of their ventral fins and the mouth is pointing downwards in benthic or forwards in pelagic species (while in the "Pseudosquishes" (sg. Pseudosquish) the mouth was still pointing backwards), they, as the name says, have jawed mouth, and they have a strong muscular tail which enables various predatory species of squish reach incredible speeds, although their jet propulsion is sufficient for cruising speed in most species.
The ancestral species had "lateral fins" on the rear part of their body, and they used them for propulsion in a very similar manner as squids on earth. This feature later evolved into vertically flapping tailfin. which is present in all extant species in a variety of sizes and shapes.

Paramesognatha ("besides 'middle jaws'") are essentially "xenoamphibians" (which are far less similar to our fellow amphibians than squish are to earthly fish. One key difference lies in reproduction, because these animals sport internal fertillization, unlike amphibians on earth.
Only the "boxer newts" are distantly lizard-like in their shape, the other two kinds of "xenoamphibians", the cryptomantises and the groundhoppers, are reminiscent of insects (with internal skeletons ;))

Eumesognatha ("true 'middle jaws'") are essentially "xenoreptiles" and the only two groups I've fleshed out so far are the "xenosharks" and "xenocrocs", but I want to have some small terrestrial species too. I am thinking if it would be possible for the "xenosharks" to re-evolve gill pouches from their lungs, I picture them as extremely adapted for aquatic lifestlyle, and I imagine the embryos of all terrestrial species to have gills at some point of their development, so a mutation could solve it, and a gilled individual would have higher "fitness" for aquatic lifestyle than a lunged individual, so this trait could spread across the population, but i don't know how possible that would be. On the other hand, I thought it would be nice to have a variety of aquatic animals with lungs, whales don't seem too limited by them, they can sometimes spend incredible durations of time underwater and dive into incredible depths, and if it doesn't limit the whales, shy should it bother me, right? =D
most Eumesognathids will be ovoparous, although the "xenosharks" will be ovoviviparous (the young will hatch immediately after the egg enters the water, like in the pig-nosed turtle.)
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I am currently working on a third group of aquatic mesognathids, also marine like the "xenosharks", but these would be smaller, seal-like species which would still crawl on dry land for breeding (which is what the "xenocrocs do as well, but I want the "seals" to be more closely related to the "xenosharks"...)
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Neognatha ("modern jaws") are essentially "xenomammals" with some crucial differences. They are either ovoparous in a few primitive species and one group of extant flyers or viviparous in most species including a second lineage of flying animals.
The difference is that the "placenta" is sack-like and the young is freed from it after birth, and thse animals don't secrete milk, but a mushy substance (which, of course, serves the same purpose).

So, that's it! All I have created on the "xenovertebrates" to this date and everything in one place!

I hope you enjoyed this guys as much as me, let me know!

(P.S. the work has just begun! =D)
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Comments33
anonymous's avatar
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OblivionJunkey94's avatar
are you going to do a size chart for you're aliens? i like these a lot
PeteriDish's avatar
I sure will do more size charts, but they oftenly swallow more time than I originally expect! =D
I am working on a "pergola tree" right now =D
OblivionJunkey94's avatar
sounds cool I'm just drawing so basic looking plants..;[ won't be anything special
PeteriDish's avatar
Ah come on! you had some nice ideas on plants before!
OblivionJunkey94's avatar
well I've got a mangrove looking tree and a bean stalk looking plant and the some thing like the Potato i did but looks a little odd i had an idea for a alien that looks like a plant
PeteriDish's avatar
Cool! I'd like to see them! =)
OblivionJunkey94's avatar
well I'm going to go over my sketches in ink and sub them tomorrow might do it later but i need to do something thirst...
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NotXRAY0128's avatar
THis is pretty interesting
PeteriDish's avatar
NotXRAY0128's avatar
PeteriDish's avatar
Cowburger13's avatar
YES! :D Sea cow's at the top of the food chain :)
PeteriDish's avatar
It's not a foodchain, actually, but if you consider all the other "atricles" of the chain to be aquatic plants, then YEAH! It's an apex predator of aquatic plants! =)

But this is not a food pyramid (food chain/food web/ecosystem), this is a phylogeny, as if you had this "comb" with lancelets, lampreys, sharks and rays, bony fishes, amphibians, reptiles, mammals and birds arranged in the propper order in which they evolved. (funny thing is that I've learned "...reptiles, birds and mammals" at school, but mammals were there since the triassic, while birds since the jurassic, so birds are the latest "big group" that arose, not mammals, but that's another story... =D)
This is the same thing, only for my project, and it's completely fictional. =D
Cowburger13's avatar
ah. PS: I'm understanding complex designing a bit more :) Could I send you a picture with muro showing my idea for a longhorn beetle?
PeteriDish's avatar
Why not? Of course you can! you don't have to have my permission to everything you want to do! =D Just put up all you want, I'm interested in seeing everything! ;P
Cowburger13's avatar
Awesome. PS: Do you think I could sell any of my models on etsy? I need money for more paper. :D
PeteriDish's avatar
M3rcaptan's avatar
hey are u in university or something? and if so, what do you study?
PeteriDish's avatar
Yeah, I am, it's english studies and literature, but I'm thinking of trying something else... =/
Why did you want to know? =)
M3rcaptan's avatar
I thought maybe you're into biology or something! xD
PeteriDish's avatar
:squee: I am, but I couldn't study it because there's allways math as a subject and I suck in math... =(
anonymous's avatar
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