Simnian Cannon Crawler

Simnian Cannon Crawlers are long multi-legged insectoids home to the great Simnian Desert. Their name stems from their ability to shoot rocks and solidified sand long distances using special organs on their backs.   A Crawler on the hunt will choose a good vantage point, like a high sand dune, and use it's natural camouflage and ability to burrow in sand to remain undetected. It can stay there, unmoving, for days at a time. When a valid prey enters it's range, it will wait until it has a guaranteed shot and then take it down by firing one or both of its cannons.

Basic Information

Anatomy

Adult Cannon Crawlers have long narrow bodies protected by segments of hard sand-coloured carapace. They propell themselves over and through the sand using a multitude of triple jointed insectoid legs. It's sharp front pincers are mainly used for taking apart prey it already shot down, but in a pinch can be used as a menacing melee weapon.   Their "cannons" consist of two long tubes housed just underneath their ventral carrapace. The muzzles of these cannons are located in two slighly raised bulges in the largest segment. A Crawler can load these firing tubes with rocks or sand using their forelimbs, which are equipped with an extra joint for the needed dexterity. If sand is loaded, special sacks excrete a compound which solidifies the loose grains into a solid clump. Air is compressed in pouches behind the tubes and can be held there for long periods of time. When the Crawler has a clear shot on it's prey, two valves will quickly release the air. The projectiles are then propelled at great velocity towards the soon-to-be meal. Crawlers can choose to fire either one or both of the cannons at the same time.   Crawler shots are very accurate, and can easily reach 150ft of distance. Some travelers have reported being hit by crawler shots from the considerable distance of 400ft.

Growth Rate & Stages

A Cannon Crawlers livecycle is separated into two stages. When coming out of the egg, a Crawler will spend up to one month in a larval stage. During this time the larvae will be fed meat by one or both of the parents. When about 1ft in length, the larva will create a solid shell of sand, using the same compound it will use in it's adult live to create solid sand projectiles. After spending a short week in the shell, the adult Crawler will dig it's way out into the world.   The older a Crawler gets, the more segments are added to their body, with the number of legs increasing as well. Crawlers just out of their larval stage will be about 2ft long with 6 legs. The average specimen encountered is 6ft with 12 legs. It is unknown how large these creatures can get. The largest individual was measured to be a full 10ft long and had space for 20 legs, though it missed 4 on the left side.

Additional Information

Perception and Sensory Capabilities

Cannon Crawlers have four front-facing eyes. The two outer ones are low resolution, but have a field of view of up to 200 degrees. These are mainly used for situational awareness. The inner two eyes are twice the size of the outer ones. They have a very narrow field of view, but can distinguish tiny details at large distances, making them excellent for targeting distant prey.
by brass_phoenix
The Simnian Cannon Crawler as depicted in Tanetra's Bestiary.
Lifespan
Unkown
Average Height
5ft.
Average Length
15ft.
Geographic Distribution

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