Friday, 14 December 2012

On the Physiology of... the Otyugh - Part Six.

Moving around

As I've previously mused on whether the Otyugh is more like some sort of slug, a question arises as to how it moves around. Originally I imagined that it had a slug or snail-like 'foot' - a sort of large pad which skimmed along a film of mucus. However, I wasn't sure that this was veering away too slightly from the whole idea of it being an animal which is fairly tough all over.

As it's a creature that needs to burrow into its food in some way, one idea was to make its underside flat but ridged so that it has some grip. That dovetailed into my previous ideas about the Otyugh being a mixture of rubbery hide and harder, mineral-like features. All of this combined into this scribble:

This shows a cross-section of one area of the body.

This shows those ridges, but also the teeth-like 'nails' it relies on for grip and perhaps also extra burrowing power. If we zoom in a bit, we can see how this might look in greater detail:

One idea driving this is that the underside is like some sort of toothed conveyor belt. With that in mind, a question arises as to how it might look when moving - I guess it could either move solely by the underside rippling along, or instead perhaps the whole body arches and rolls along in a caterpillar-like way. Here's a scribble showing how the muscles controlling this under the hide could look:

The idea is that they're ropey tendons attached to the main mass of the spine plates.

My various posts on the Otyugh will hopefully combine soon into a more detailed picture. Watch this space!

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