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Compsognathus

Illustration by T-PEKC of JPLegacy.

Isla Nublar
Isla Sorna

Physical CharacteristicsEdit

Length: 3 feet
Height: 1 foot
Weight: 6 pounds

Formerly "Compsognathus longipes".

Coloration:

Male: A bright green mottling with darker green back striping.
Female: Paler version of the male. 
Juvenile (both sexes): A light brown that gain green pigmentation later in life.

DietEdit

Primarily lizards, small mammals and invertebrates, although swarms are capable of taking down much larger prey, usually dinosaurs the size of a Dryosaurus. Compsognathus is also an opportunistic scavenger and will consume dung and carrion. In fact Compsognathus was bred initially to be a form of waste disposal for Jurassic Park on Isla Nublar. Due to the extinction of prehistoric bacteria which broke down sauropod (and other large herbivorus dinosaur) dung, many Compsognathus were produced to help keep the island clean, as their own dung is small and easily broken down by modern bacteria.

Preferred HabitatEdit

These tiny dinosaurs can be found all over Sorna and Nublar although they prefer any habitat that has sufficient cover where they can hide, such as long grass or thick undergrowth.

Social StructureEdit

Social dinosaurs, preferred groups range from two to 20 individuals.

DescriptionEdit

Small venomous bipedal carnivore, the second smallest dinosaur cloned by InGen. Sleek body, long neck, tail and legs, two fingers on each hand. Jaws are narrow, filled with many sharp, pointed teeth. Eyes large. Despite its "cute" appearance, compies are in fact highly aggressive and will not hesitate to bite on contact if it is hungry or feels threatened.

Breeding SeasonEdit

Individuals/ clans breed all year round, although flocks are more likely to breed when wet season boosts vegetation cover and food supply.

BehaviorsEdit

As well as being the smallest species of dinosaur on Sorna, Compsognathus is also one of the most abundant thanks to its high birth and fast growth rates. Each individual in a swarm emits a pungent pheromone which fuel their adrenaline levels, causing them to act erratic and violent as well as to appear fearless and inquisitive in the presence of larger creatures, often being so bold as to steal strips of meat from the kills of bigger carnivores. Lone compies behave much like other small carnivores - timid and skittish. This is due to the lack of pheromones being produced by others in a swarm. When alone for too long, females may become stressed and release infertile eggs involuntarily.

Compsognathus mating and chick-rearing habits are vastly different depending on whether the mated pair is solitary or a part of a much larger group. A mated pair of Compsognathus without a flock is far more dedicated to one another than a mated pair living within a flock; and they also remain together for longer. A lone male will attempt to secure a mate by performing an elaborate, high-energy dance, whereby he will perform a series of hops, leaps and flips to allow the female to assess his physical fitness. If receptive, the female will respond by circling the male, rubbing her body against his before allowing him to mount. Following the coupling, the male will engage in ritual feeding behavior and even help to locate a safe place in which the female can lay her eggs. When the eggs hatch, both parents take care of the young, and upon reaching adulthood they are not forced to leave their parents like many other dinosaur species. As the lead pair continue to reproduce, their adult offspring are also seeking mates and producing offspring of their own. As a result these familial “clans” continue to expand, eventually forming the great flocks for which this dinosaur is known. After several generations, mate dedication becomes a thing of the past as reproduction becomes a much more maddening affair. This is due to the high levels of adrenaline-producing pheromones and the increasing competition within the flock. Vicious fights between males over females and squabbles between females over the best males will occur, with males flitting from female to female in a rush to fertilize as many as possible before their rivals. As a result, inbreeding becomes a common occurrence, and compies living in a flock, while happier in general, often have poorer health owing to the high possibility of their parents being closely related.

Eggs are usually laid within a burrow underground, a hollow in a tree, in dense thickets or deep inside the forgotten reaches of human structures. Lone parents take a lot of time and care to look after their first brood, thus helping to form the bonds that will remain for the rest of their lives. As their numbers continue to grow, laying and chick-rearing become far more chaotic. Flock Compsognathus nest communally, in which many hastily-built nests all tightly clumped together in a small space. The eggs are incubated by anyone within the flock, not necessarily by their own parents. The chicks are capable of running around and hunting with the adults of the flock within days of hatching, and the sheer number of juveniles produced means that at least a few do manage to survive and produce offspring of their own.

Compsognathus produces a mild venom from glands in the lower jaw. A compy's strong jaws lock onto the victim and the venom is injected into the bloodstream via its small teeth, similar in fashion to a Gila monster. Although a single bite would not do an adult human much harm, in high doses the venom has a calming effect, preventing the victim from struggling as the compy swarm begins to eat the prey even while it is still alive. Like an army of ants, flocks of compies patrol the jungle floor, eating anything in their way from insects to small dinosaurs, devouring them alive in a piranha-like fashion. Compsognathus bites also have the potential to pass on severe infections due to the bacteria in the animal's jaws, which it gains from the dung and rotting carrion it eats.

Fast and intelligent, Compsognathus is active both day and night thanks to its large eyes and sharp eyesight. Like Velociraptors, Compsognathus is very vocal and communicate with others using a variety of squeaks, whistles and chirps. Unlike raptor packs, Compsognathus flocks appear to have no real hierarchy, although one or a few individuals may appear more dominant over the group. This is usually the eldest mated pair within the flock, or their eldest offspring/ descendants. Wherever they go, the rest will follow.

ResourcesEdit

Page Illustration by T-PEKC Text from LtL Isla Sorna Field Guide

GalleryEdit

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