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Old Jun 7 2020, 06:16 PM   #1
CuriousFlit
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Fan of: Dragonriders of Pern
Default Are Dragons Mesotherms / Photosynthetic? How much do they eat?

I know dragons are said to be warm-blooded, but they only eat about once a week (so once every 7 days or so since a Pern week = an Earth week) when fully grown right?

That seems like a surprisingly slow metabolism for a warm-blooded animal that big (even if half the length is tail), assuming they're purely warm-blooded. By Skies of Pern there are "six thousand two hundred and forty dragons, and half of them are brown, bronze, and gold". So I'm wondering if there's some trick engineered into them to help with getting that extra needed energy without plunging Pern into a famine trying to feed all those dragons.

They sure do like sunbathing whenever possible, so I'm wondering if that ties into it. Do they get some of their energy directly from the sun?

Has anyone figured out about how much dragons will eat per feeding, btw? I remember that big green from Skies of Pern and her rider saying that two felines will feed her for a week. I know the big cats keep getting called cheetahs or lions, so I just assumed they started out as normal cheetahs, but over time they got bigger and changed in body structure, which made them look more like lions.

So how much meat would you say you get off a lion-sized cheetah? That green was also big for her color, wasn't she?

I know dragons eat "herdbeasts" (cows? goats? sheep?) and wherries are said to look like turkeys (I assume wild ones except those that got domesticated) but are as big as ostriches. So how much would you get from an ostrich-sized turkey?

On that note, how do the dragons get their needed skeletal boron from their red-meat diet? Dragonlover's Guide to Pern says the boron from Pern's grasses ends up in the guts of livestock. Dragons eat everything from their kills, right?

If we consider that 9th Pass dragons (meaning dragons born during Bendon Weyr's 400+ years of isolation and inbreeding) are measured in meters and dragons of all other Passes from 3rd onward are measured in feet (that being their pre-programmed size), with Ruth being 20ft long (meaning if he wasn't neuter, he'd have been a small green)--

--And yes, I know this debate will probably go on forever lol :P

But I do have a reason for measuring dragons this way, see this post: http://forums.srellim.org/showpost.p...0&postcount=60

So about how much would dragons be eating? Breaking down their meal sizes by color, of course. I know a green certainly wouldn't have the same diet as a gold. I tend to use the population scale from the Pern wiki:

50% green
30% blue
15% brown
5% bronze
less than 1% gold
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