Pokémon in our Biomes pt. 5: Tropical Rainforests (1 of 2)
I’ve recently decided to make a series of posts with hypothetical thinking and analyzing of what Pokémon species could potentially be found in the world’s biomes. Not at all relative to the games, I will be focusing primarily of the elements, design, and relativity to real life flora and fauna of Pokémon to depict where different species would roam on our big blue marble.
Thank you all SO much for the feedback and love! I am so happy you’re enjoying these posts so far, because I love making them. PLEASE reblog if you like it, and make sure you check out my other PIOB posts at my blog!
EDIT: I just made a quick addition to the Pokémon listed here. It seems that I didn’t focus nearly as much on the Pokémon actually LIVING in the jungle, so I just made a little edit to fix that. Enjoy the read!
I am especially excited for this one. Suggested by cari28ch3-me, this post will be on Pokémon found in tropical rainforests. Growing up I had a ton of animal and plant encyclopedias, hence my love for the wilderness and ecology. The tropical rainforest plants and animals were always my favourite because of the immense diversity, morphology, and beauty a lot of the species in this biome have. A lot of moisture, humidity, and rainfall, an amazing abundance of plant life needs to grow as high as possible to catch the sun before it is filtered to the shadowy ground below, allowing for a huge environment among the trees that different species can utilize as habitats. I can promise you, I will not have all the Pokémon you can think of in this post. I will more than likely be making a second tropical rainforest post, just to compensate the ones forgotten in this post because frankly, if I had ALL of them in this post, it would be ridiculously long.
Unfortunately, the beautiful environment found in tropical rainforests across the world are being depleted due to deforestation. We all know this, it’s not anything new. If you should feel compelled to donate to the conservation effort, you can do so here: http://www.rainforest-alliance.org/
This Pokémon is designed after the rafflesia plant, which is known to be the largest flower on earth, and also the smelliest, often being described as smelling like rotting flesh. Vileplume is said to use it’s toxic spores to immobilize prey, then catch up to it after it has been paralyzed then devour it. Like my other PIOB posts, this one will have a fairly reoccurring theme: eat or be eaten. In the tropical rainforests, everything is in a bitter survival of the fittest, and every species utilizes every resource available to not only hide from predators, but to also hunt. Although I never considered Vileplume much of a carnivore, it just goes to show that even for grass type Pokémon in the jungle, its eat or be eaten.
Although Vileplume seems sweet and cuddly, the more I look into it the more of a monster it is. It is said that their pollen is highly toxic, and hence what does all of the immobilizing. Although it might not be much of a climber, this makes it all the more easier for it catch its prey among the fallen leaves and trees in the jungle. Imagine a Vileplume, calmly sitting by a massive tree, where it then releases it’s pollen either in defense of a Pokémon/animal attacking it, or simply to reproduce. If anything nearby happens to inhale the pollen and becomes immobilized, then that just makes an easy meal for Vileplume that it doesn’t have to walk far to get to (considering it’s head is so heavy it can barely lift it).
My favourite grass Pokémon, Victreebel, is probably one of the best designed Pokémon out there, because the pitcher plant that it is based off of is essentially Victrebell minus the fangs and eyes. Like Victreebel, pitcher plants secrete a sweet smelling honey that attracts prey, then once they fall into the “bell,” they are slowly digested by powerful acids. An interesting thing to note about Victreebel, is that apparently they horde food and leaf stones, and use these stones in evolution ceremonies, gathering around while Weepinbells evolve. I think pitcher plants have evolved into an amazing species as it is, and even in the Pokémon world, that is taken one step further by having these grass Pokémon, arguably evolving (phylogenetically speaking) from pitcher plants, have such evolutionary advancement they are un-rooted and intelligent mobile beings that even have the cognitive brain ability to hold ceremonies.
Although Vileplume’s evolutionary line seems to be more ground-bound, Victreebels I would imagine would find life more in the tree tops. Victreebel and even Weepinbell physically don’t have legs, therefor would never really need to be on the ground. However, where does that leave Bellsprout? It’s roots are obviously meant to absorb nutrients through the soil right? Although this would make sense, Bellsprout are quite flexible. Like the three-toed sloth, it can be hypothesized that Bellsprout would only come down to the forest floor to gain nutrients or water when needed, spending the rest of the time swinging through the forest with it’s evolutions like monkeys.
The tropical rainforest is a great biome, because there is not one specific genre of animals or plants you would commonly find in it, like how you can find a lot of mammalian species in the African savanna. There are tons of species of EVERYTHING in the tropical rainforests. Notably are invertebrates. There are hundreds, if not thousands of species of spiders alone. Giant orb weavers, jumping spiders, wolf spiders, bird-eating tarantulas the size of dinner plates, Spinirak and Ariados are no different. With all of the traits and abilities of spiders in the real world, they are perfectly suited for life in the tropical rainforests. Also, in a ecological sense, there needs to be some kind of invertebrate to feed the insectivores in the forests, and add to the food chain.
Again, like Victreebel, I doubt these Pokémon would ever really be found near the forest floor. Their physiology simply wouldn’t make sense. ALL spiders have the ability to climb walls and produce silk. Even though wandering spiders and jumping spiders may not make permanent webs, the size alone of Ariados would allow for some HUGE webs throughout the forest, allowing for maximum prey yield in forms such as Chatots, other bug Pokémon, etc.
One of the coolest animals I saw in my encyclopedias were dart frogs. Small and beautifully coloured, but amazingly toxic, the small frogs were used by native Amazonians to poison their blow darts used to hunt prey, hence the name. It was hard to decide which frog Pokémon I should put in this post, and it came down to either Politoed or these guys. I figured Politoed would be a great candidate because in the rainforests, small puddles would form in leafs or trees after an intense rainfall, and dart frogs would utilize these small ponds to lay their eggs. Considering Croagunk isn’t necessarily a tadpole, it was a challenge to decide if he should be noted in the post. However, considering that if he is born as a fully bi-pedal Pokémon, then there really wouldn’t be a need or even dependence on the water, but like their dex entries state and even their ability dry skin, they still obviously require a moist and humid environment to live in. Furthermore, they are toxic frogs. I think for a Pokémon that is designed off of dart frogs, they should at least be found where dart frogs are. Plus, I like to imagine that the natives would use these Pokémon’s toxic abilities to aid in their hunting strategies, and eventually taming them as part of their clan.
Another interesting theory about these Pokémon is that even though Groagunk is usually more of a runner than a fighter, because of Toxicroak’s more toned physic, jumping high into the trees and from branch to branch would be a simple task. Also, seeing as it is more agile, this would allow for better hunting and fighting for territory, leaving the unevolved Croagunks to mind their own until they grow the speed, intimidation, and agility to fearlessly rule the jungle.
Finally a Pokémon that isn’t a poison type! However, one must realize that the ability to produce venom, toxins, or acids, has been a great evolutionary benefit to many species throughout the world. It’s far easier for something to immobilize its prey with venom and devouring it while it can’t fight back as opposed to trying to catch the prey and asphyxiate it to kill it. Even using secreted toxins from the skin like dart frogs may not serve as any hunting aid, it is still an amazing defense mechanism. On the topic of defense mechanisms, Chatot has a dandy. The ability to recreate any Pokémon cry at will can be pretty useful in the jungle. From scaring small prey, to warding off predators, I think that aside from resembling a parrot or macaw, Chatot would serve quite well in the tropical rainforests.
Although it can be hard to imagine such a vividly coloured bird out in the open of a jungle, one needs to remember that colour schemes on most animals is directly related to attracting mates (birds of paradise). With the mix of it being able to scare off any predator, I doubt Chatot really has any issues with predators, even if they do stick out like a sore thumb.
Tigers and Jaguars are just some of the notable predatory mammals that can be found in tropical rainforests. I would imagine that because it’s recognized for having such beautiful fur, like tigers for example, it would gradually be hunted for its pelt. Although tigers have a great colour scheme to help it hide from it’s prey, Liepard’s gold and purple fur may stand out a bit more to the brown and green jungle, but I wouldn’t know, just a hunch. Furthermore, it is known entirely for being sneaky and stealthy, which as you can imagine, is one of the best ways of catching prey in the jungle. Tigers and jaguars have been doing it for so long, I feel like the designers of this gorgeous Pokémon really took those big cats’ hunting strategy into consideration for Liepard’s design.
I remember seeing a documentary (I forget what is was about, something about a team in a jungle, whatever,) and while they were putting away their geear for the night, they started to hear jaguar calls. They couldn’t see it, but it was right outside their tent. I imagine that a situation such as that would be even more fearful with a Liepard, simply because of their intellect, cattiness (did I just..?), and stealth. I would not trust being alone in the jungle at night having these guys around.
Surprisingly enough there are bats in the rainforests, but usually they stick to fruit instead of insects or blood. Flying foxes (megabats) are usually the one that comes to mind as far as forest bats go. It’s huge wingspan and canine like facial features yield it the name. But have you guys ever seen this:
I KNOW. WE ALL WANT 10. THEY’RE UNFATHOMABLY ADORABLE.
They’re known as Ectophylla alba, or the Honduran white bat. Huddling together for warmth, and hiding under the leaves of trees, Honduran white bats (to me) bear a striking resemblance to Woobats. Although obviously Woobats are generally considered cave Pokémon, I imagine that they would fare better in the jungles than a cave. Considering it has a type advantage to most of the Pokémon mentioned above, plus morphologically speaking it’s single sharp tooth could be used to crack open hard fruits or nuts as opposed to live prey, I doubt that it wouldn’t be able to survive in the rainforests, and in fact would probably survive quite well.
Alright guys, that’s it for now! I now there a ton of Pokémon that I missed (Carnivine, Aipom, Tropius,) but I am probably going to be making a second tropical rainforest post to list the rest, so don’t worry!
Also, remember that these are only my ideas and interpretations. If you have any comments feel free to let me know! Also, make sure you reblog and check out my other posts. I hope you liked this one! I had a blast making it!
Thanks for reading!