And what the hell would it eat anyway?
Our tentative postulate is that the "glass tubes" are not geological in origin. That they are elastic and do not carry liquid water or anything substantially massive (the mass density of anything passing through must be low to avoid breaking the tube away from its points of attachment).
We further speculate that the worms (shown in the previous page) are also not dunes but rather the animals themselves.
After seeing other pictures of actual dunes in close lengthy corridors, I am still not able to see the "tubes" as more examples of these same kinds of "dunes". However, I can see how some people would see them in that light. So, I do grant that I may be entirely wrong in this whole matter. If so, I am wasting some number of hours in designing these animals (but it certainly is an enjoyable intellectual excercise ... if that's all it is). Again, what I need to see is ... another picture. If nothing has moved ... then I can concede the point and move on to other things. Till then, let's make worms !
Waiter, there's a fly in my soup!
"Sir, the fly in not IN the soup, the fly is ON the soup."
Although my entire thesis is based on only two dubious photos, the contention that there is current life on Mars has more support than that ... especially at the more acceptable level of plant life of moderate size. Here is a possible food suply for the giant worms.
This is a crop of the larger photo below (just reread this and saw the pun ;o). Note the shadows cast left to right by ... what? Clearly there is something on the dunes ... not in the dunes such as boulders. And whatever it is ... it seems to exist ONLY on the dunes. It won't venture so much as a foot off the dune. These "spots" are said to change with the seasons. I don't know the scale here.
I am not altogether aware of who is finding all these wonderful photos. Richard Hoagland is one of the main participants in the ongoing debates. Visit his site at Enterprise Mission and check out the links.
If the dark objects are "rocks", why do the rocks end exactly where the dunes end? Surely they cannot hold the sand and keep the wind from blowing it farther out onto the crater floor ... where there are no rocks. That is, if the rocks are not functionally connected with they sand ... why are the rock & sand fields exactly congruent? The Martian wind is not powerful enough to blow rocks.
If we conceed that the rock & sand fields are mutually dependent ... we have few reasonable alternatives.
Martian plants (solar energized) gain a "foothill" in a crack near the edge of the crater. Roots break up the crater floor perhaps by some form of acid dissolve ... and produce sand. New plants more easily take root in the loose sand ... die in the sand (making more nutrient rich sand) ... and the plants advance with the sand in lockstep.
As the sand is blown, it expands at the front end in the general direction of the wind then forms a rounded front as it becomes a large enough obstruction to the wind to cause a lee side "accumulator". This is evidence of an "inside the crater" sand source.
Alternatively, the sand is already there (by unknown mechanisms) independent of the plants and they simply take advantage of it ... breeding into the available space.
I would guess that these plants would take carbon dioxide from the Martian air and "fix" the oxygen in some fashion ... like nitrogen fixing bacteria in legumes and such. Why fix the oxygen? Because it is not in the atmosphere ... and ... the worms need it to transfer energy from the plant processes. They are "herbivores" aka ... cows ... and there is nothing to chemically react with what they eat ... if ... there is no oxygen source.
Or ... some form of Martian crystal growth effects the same mutual dependence.
Either case would be interesting and therefore begs more photos especially at higher resolution. There may be many such fields on Mars. What is the acreage under cultivation, etc.?
If these are indeed some form of plant, then we are free to conjecture an entire ecosystem of lesser, more primitive species which might live in the sands of Mars and which could be utilized by our worms for energy.
Ultimately, that energy source must be the sun ... same as here on earth. Perhaps there is an abundant supply of "oxygen-fixing sand fungus" in the top layer of Mars which the behemoths eat (like a worm) and extract food value. They may not need large supplies of food if they move very slowly, grow very slowly and have very slow metabolisms.
1) This means that we have a first deduction about the Hoagies ... they are very old as individuals. To grow this big (even if they are mostly gas) will take a long time.
2) Predation is insignificant. If there is anything which eats them ... it doesn't affect the total population.
2) There may be hundreds of thousands of them on Mars. If the worm picture is real ... (there may be 40-50 individuals in this weller) ... they must be all over the place and Mars has the same land area as Earth. If they move slowly, if this picture is typical ... then ... there must be many more "wellers" of Hoagies all over the planet.