Addendum 2: Tyranid Biology

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Authorization <ACCEPTED>

Tyranid Biology Thesis Addendum: Bio-diversity

A Treatise on exceptional metamorphic phases, mutations, aberrations and adaptations within Hive Fleet: Designation Harbinger.

Basic theory on "bio-morphs" states that these are mutations or aberrations which may be the result of evolutionary attempts. We have classified all known/recorded bio-morphs into the following categories:

  1. Metamorphic Phases: Characteristics common in one creature being exhibited by another. Early reports indicated this as a metamorphosis, which is fact erroneous.
  2. Aberrations: Characteristics which are seen sporadically within the defined element but are not adequate enough to be considered Adaptations.
  3. Mutations: Unusual enhancement of specific aspects of biology, rarely seen reliably within any group. Presumed to be due to genetic defect or abnormality rather than intent. Magos Biologis Salk dismisses this category as "merely the earliest stages of adaptation or metamorphic phases."
  4. Adaptations: Seen and recognized as typical of a true sub-species. Broods exhibit the trait or characteristic as do offspring (where applicable)
These classifications stem from our conclusion that nearly all the bio-morphs exhibited to date (with mutation exceptions) show no variation in genetic code of the individual species. Only hormonal or enzymic levels exhibited in the creature serve to differentiate one sub-specie from another. Thus bio-morphs exhibited by a particular creature MAY be exhibited by any or the entire same species [sp. spp.] creature. All the genetic code required is there, only a catalyst or trigger is required. It is thought that this is done during the formative/developmental times are when these enzymic/hormonal ratios are determined by diet. This allows the NORN queens of the tyranids to customize the suitability of developing creatures for projected needs. This explains why established hordes tend to become more difficult to deal with as time progresses.

Note: Due to this classification system some older classifications will become outdated. Any "bio-morph" which relies on or includes any symbiotic or separate creatures will be moved to the Bio-weaponry thesis for classification. Only those traits which are part of the creature in question will be discussed here.

  1. <Reclassified symbiotic Bio-weapons system>Living hive:<Alvearium vivus> Aberration sp. Carnifex/ Observed on <INSERT REF> no detailed analysis can be made. Specimens of the small flying tyranids indicate a significant threat to exposed troops both by direct injury and possible exposure to Nid plague variations. Threat to marine troops is still being considered, it is advisable that any creatures exhibiting trait be dealt with at range. Tyranica cardru and Tyranica culex <REF >
  2. Acid Blood: <Saguisacerbus>Aberration All/ Initial descriptions of this trait were miss-interpreted as acidic blood. In fact the mechanism in effect is a high-pressure cyst filled with corrosive enzymes rather than circulatory material. These cysts are very large versions of the small Tyr-gel cysts noted in the defensive/durability adaptation sub-section. When ruptured these cysts spray the contents away from the creature but any blood in the mixture is due to the initial entry wound not expelled material. Highly corrosive and a strong oxidizer these enzymes are capable of inflicting significant damage.
  3. Adrenaline sac:<Celerculeus> Mutation Sp. Carnifex/ Found within the primary trunk affixed to the 5th lumbar vertebrae (fused). Large gland capable of producing an adrenaline-like secretion which has the effect of greatly increasing the basic metabolism of the subject tyranid. Enhancing both speed and reflexive ability, while quickly neutralized internally this compound does affect tyranids. We are currently studying the mechanism for possible chemical warfare applications against tyranids.
  4. Aura of Torment:<Ventilare Cruciare>/ Aberrations. A neural node at the base of the Brain stem on Tyranicus Tyranica. Capable of emitting a psychic "white noise" which has a very disquieting effect upon human minds exposed to it. Brain wave patterns are confused and rational thought is reduced immediately by exposure to these emanations. No permanent damage has been observed as a direct result of this exposure.
  5. Bioplasma: <Fulgereardor> Adaptation Sp. Carnifex/ Metamorphic phase on others. This particular biological function is something of an anomaly. We are unable, given simply the biological components of the orifice, to determine how it works. High frequency sound, bioelectric current and argon/neon noble gases are used but the effect far exceeds the experimental result, Lagmuir Probe ratings only 17% of observed. An unknown catalyst/factor is presumed. Opinions lean towards Psychic stimulus although some as yet unknown enzymatic path may exist. We are continuing to isolate and analyze these in hopes of explaining this phenomenon.
  6. Enhanced senses: <Amplificatio Sensium> Aberration Lictor/ One known example, <INSERT REF INFO>fail>fail>. Antenna formed with exceptional olfactory receptors, heightened visual acuity, and nearly microscopic feeler hairs were all found on the "Beast of Dunfinnin". An aberrant lictor killed by the space wolves on the Star Trader "Dunfinnin" during boarding action and forwarded to New Hallefuss for study due to its unusual nature. It is suspected that these would allow the creature to even track prey through the solid bulkheads within starships.
  7. Flesh hooks <Uncus Corpusoris> Adaptation common/ Barbed chitin "hooks" typically 8 inches long, tethered to a serpentine ligature that is covered in a remarkably elastic sheath. The ligature remains coiled just below the skin surface (or chitin) until the neural impulses stimulate the attached muscle bundles. The causes a rapid extension of the ligature with considerable kinetic force. Ligatures are usually 10-14 IU in length and retract with considerable force once the impulse ceases. Some hooks have been found to rest within hollows in the chitin armor, interlocking when not in use.

  8. Hardened Carapace:<Meglo Ossium> Aberration wide spread/ Additional calcification of dermal regions and higher density and thickness of all Chitin areas. Noted reduction in reaction time for creatures exhibiting this trait. No internal increase in endoskeleton structure has been observed except in rare individuals which are thought to exhibit Toughened Endoskeleton:<Magnius Ossium> in conjunction.
  9. Nematocysts: <Aculeatus Cella>adaptation sp. Carnifex / Hive Tyrant / Lictor / Hollow chitin needles .5 meter in length with a 1 meter tether and .75 meter trigger hairs. Impact rated at 300psi capable of piercing weak points in most armor systems. Venom akin to lictor venom <q.v.> is capable of killing even marines.
  10. Optic Membranes:<Oculorum Membrana> adaptation multiple / A second eyelid which is opaque to visible light. Perhaps adaptation to attacks on extremely high intensity light planets. Retracts below the ocular orb and is invisible to external examination.
  11. Regeneration:<Expedia Salvataris> Aberration Carnifex, Tyrant Sp.Spp./ Even the substantial durability of tyranids can be bolstered by rapid biogenesis to repair damage. Though uncommon this has been observed in some specimens, tertiary systems coupled with highly accelerated mitosis; calcification and mending allow these individuals to recover quickly from all but the most egregious of wounds. One Tyranicus Tyranicii carcass showed newly generated cord material that reconnected the severed gangliatic cord. Such ability is exceptional in the extreme and when coupled with these creatures normal durability makes them nearly unstoppable without anti-armor weapons.

  12. Sharpened Claws:<Mordax Unquis> Adaptation Lictor/ Psychic neural cords extend throughout the subchitin of the large striking arms terminating in psychically charged spikes running the full length of the terminate phangi. Exaggerated development of the truncated celebre associated with the hivemind is also noted in specimens exhibiting this characteristic.

  13. Toughened Endoskeleton:<Magnius Ossium> Aberration Warriors/lictor / Increased hardness and density of skeletal structure, adding weight and protection to the dual celebre ganglia, and both primary and secondary gangliated cord.
  14. Venom Sacs:<Veneno Necare>Adaptation lictor/warriors/ Sebaceous glands that exude oil rich in toxic and venomous compounds typically along the lateral line of the attack arms. (complete later)<ref poison>
  15. Venomous Sting:<Veneno Puctiato> Adaptation lictor/warriors/ Highly exaggerated psychically charged protuberance, located at the terminus of the lower abdomen. Interconnected with several voluminous Venom Sacs q.v. which are routed into a myriad of tiny apertures. Resulting aerosol of acid venom when used against troop contingent vehicles is devastating.
  16. We have received reports of tyranids exhibiting space warping ability, power fields, energy backlash systems and the like. While we do not dismiss these, they have yet to be quantified by testing or exhibited in specimens within the lab. Creatures, which are believed to have these capabilities, should be killed or captured and forwarded to our location using alpha bio-quarantine measures. We will forward more information, as it becomes available.

Draco Legion Biomedical Research station: New Hallefuss
Master Apothicariate Curairus
Chief Magos Biologis Salk