There have been several reports of Air Kraken over New Babbage in recent days. I have yet to view these creatures myself but have seen drawings and photographs. I decided to research the literature on this natural phenomena which was unknown to me before arriving in this time.

I came across this on The Steampunk Forum, written by a Mr. Qubehead…

(Editor’s Notes:

1. The author’s research has not been independently confirmed.

2. Ladies may wish to pass over this article as, while scientific, it is rather graphic.)

“The dreaded Air Kraken, scourge of the steampunk skies, actually begins life in the deep ocean. In its appearance, habits and diet, there is little to distinguish the juvenile kraken from its purely marine cousins. As it approaches maturity however, it begins to change radically. Like other giant squids, the kraken’s flesh is heavily impregnated with ammonia for buoyancy; as it matures, it secretes a catalytic enzyme which reacts the NH3 with H2O to produce gaseous H2, with aqueous HNO3 expelled as waste. The hydrogen gas accumulates very slowly in a bladder in the kraken’s mantle, thus raising it toward the ocean’s surface slowly enough to allow it to adapt to decreasing pressure. As the kraken nears the surface, the pressure change triggers a dramatic increase in production of the catalytic enzyme; all the animal’s remaining NH3 is converted to hydrogen, distending its gas-bladder hugely… and the true ‘air kraken’ takes to the sky, where it will spawn and eventually die. Once airborne, it propels itself by flapping its membranous wings. Its ink glands, deprived of their watery medium, expel their product as an extremely fine smoke-like black dust. The air kraken’s favored aerial habitat is the towering cumulonimbus clouds- they keep its skin moist and make an excellent lurking-place. Scientists remain puzzled as to how the kraken finds nourishment in the skies; they have never been seen low enough to hunt birds, and at higher altitudes there is little prey save the occasional unwary aeronaut. Because of this, it is surmised that air krakens never eat at all after reaching full maturity- like salmon, they ascend only to mate and die. Attacks on zeppelins occur when the kraken mistakes the aircraft for either an eligible female or a rival male. The air kraken’s eggs are mere air-filled balloons, weighted at the bottom by the embryonic animal, which drift gently down into the sea and begins its life cycle anew.”

original source…

http://brassgoggles.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5583.0

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