The Arboreal Squid

I recently realized that I never really described one of the fun features of the NeoNihon setting. As an ecologist by trade, I tend to love creating flora and fauna that fit the world. Shi-Tateyama is often described as a world of sweltering temperatures at sea-level, wtih frequent, harsh and corrosive tempests. Cyclones and tornados are common occurences, with commensurate effects on the native organisms.

The Plum Willows:

These are the native tree-analogues that spread across the planet. According to terran classifications, they are half-fungal with hyphea and thick, rubbery “wood,” the colour of ripe  plums. The countless drooping branches are tipped with photosynthetic “flowers” that most closely resemble pink cherry blossoms, each of which produces a single nut. When the tree is struck by strong winds, the entire organism bends rather than breaking, with flowers and seeds flung great distances.

The Squiderrels:

These are football-sized, arboreal squid that live in the Plum Willows. They fill the same ecological niche as squirrels, harvesting the Plum Willow nuts. They are remarkably adaptive critters, who may or may not have mastered basic tool use. They can change colour for no discernable reason and make an audible chittering noise when they form their highly-social colonies in stands of trees. When threatened, they have been known to swarm their attacker and excrete hydrochloric acid.  When wind strikes their tree, they choose to cling tightly to the branches, or to be safely flung into a long-distance glide.

I love worldbuilding. Just a little bit.
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