Basic anatomy[edit | edit source]
The following materials can be found in any Federation High School xeno-biology textbook. It illustrates the physical make up of the most commonly encountered Arachnid, the warrior bug. Most sub-species follow a similar physiology though great departures are possible in the more advanced species such as brain bugs.
Main/Upper Body[edit | edit source]
The warrior bug’s upper body counts for around one-half its total mass. It is a conical shell of dry, crusty ﬂesh, protected by a chitinous exoskeleton which contains most of the warrior’s important organs.
Chitinous Shell[edit | edit source]
A warrior’s carapace covers its entire body, from the point of its mandibles to the tips of its legs. It is thin enough to allow easy movement, while retaining enough hardness as to withstand heavy kinetic attacks, particularly against the upper shell (1a) and the sharp knobs protecting articulation centres (1b), where the chitinous covering is three or four times thicker than in the rest of the body. The shell can deﬂect stray Morita shells and only concerted attacks have a chance of penetration.
Mandibles[edit | edit source]
A warrior’s massive jaws occupy more than one-third of its total body mass, possibly revealing an early physiological trait designed for close combat. The upper jaw ends in a single, sharp ‘beak’ or fang, curved downward while the lower jaw has two such fangs, curving upward to form a perfect ‘V’ section. When the jaws close, they function as highly advanced scissors, cutting tough matter and pushing it back to the inner mandibles. These are lined with sharp ridges for breaking down food after it has been torn off with the front fangs.
Claws[edit | edit source]
A warrior bug’s claws are articulated and positioned like a Terran mantis’, ending in a single sharp spike. These claws allow a bug to make downward piercing attacks, with a strength that belies their relatively small size. It has been theorised that a warrior bug’s claws are actually their ﬁfth and sixth legs, atrophied and adapted for combat instead of walking. Such a development may have been due to repeated encounters with smaller prey, requiring primitive Arachnids to have alternative attack forms besides their oversized jaws though it is just as likely that warrior bugs were engineered without regard for previous evolutionary designs.
Antenna[edit | edit source]
The tripartite bony crest above a warrior bug’s head serves as a receptor for auditory and electromagnetic signals on multiple wave lengths, directing them into the aural cavity connected to the nerve centre. It is believed that the crest may also be a channel for psychic reactions and impulses, the conduit by which brains and queens communicate with warrior bugs.
Tail Fins[edit | edit source]
These protrusions monitor the warrior bug’s sense of smell, by which it identiﬁes the chemical auras that represent approximately half of the Arachnid language.
Nerve Stem[edit | edit source]
This relatively thin, sinewy trunk separates the Arachnid’s upper and lower bodies. The stem is the central node of the bug’s nervous system, its centre for retrieval and analysis of commands and other signals. It is the closest thing a warrior bug has to a brain. Severing a warrior’s nerve stem kills it immediately.
Circulatory Node[edit | edit source]
In place of a true heart, warrior bugs have a simple knot of veins and muscles, pumping blood to the rest of their bodies. Contrary to the nerve stem, this node is hidden safely inside an Arachnid’s main body.
Throat Passage/Craw[edit | edit source]
All food that comes through a warrior bug’s mandibles passes through the creature’s oesophagus and then to the mass of crushing sphincters that comprise its craw. From there, all food is directed to the creature’s stomach sac for digestion.
Stomach Sac[edit | edit source]
This relatively small pod is where the warrior bug’s digestion takes place. From here, all chewed food is bathed in bile acids and squeezed off through special membranes, dropping the remaining chunks into appendal cysts.
Aural Cavity[edit | edit source]
This empty space inside a bug’s body serves as a resonance box to amplify and interpret sounds and electromagnetic pulses.
Lower Body[edit | edit source]
This section comprises less than one-third of a warrior bug’s total body mass. Besides the small lower body pod itself, this section contains the warrior’s ambulatory system.
Junction[edit | edit source]
This is a small ﬂesh pod, connected to the upper body and lower limbs through stifﬂ y moving joints. The joints at this node are clumsier and jerkier than those in the legs and mandibles, due to the chitinous protections that hinder movement.
Legs[edit | edit source]
Each of a warrior bug’s legs is divided in three jointed segments, almost four feet long apiece. The leg joints are protected by bony ridges, which mesh perfectly with each other to facilitate quick movement.
Lower Digestive System[edit | edit source]
This cluster of organs contains the Arachnid’s sub-stomachs, known as appendal cysts. Here, digested food is broken down further into its basic nutrients and diverted to the Arachnid’s circulatory system. Whatever remains after this falls into the glottal chamber and is subjected to the last, strongest acid before being expelled through the creature’s anus.