Credit: 123Thundernugget On Earth a variety of tiny lifeforms float and drift in the air at the mercy of the winds, just like marine plankton that are at the mercy of the currents. However, what goes up must come down and they ultimately return to the ground. If an aerial ecosystem involving lighter-than-air filter feeding gasbags is to exist then aerial plankton should be much richer than on Earth and likely adapted to perpetual living in the clouds. This article fits within a wider series on lighter-than-air-life.
Credit: Richard Bizley, bizleyart.com It seems that one of the most common speculative evolution questions is whether or not lighter-than-air organisms (aka gasbags) are viable. I therefore thought I should write a comprehensive post on the subject to act as a general reference. Ironically, the length of my draft inflated to a large size as it turned out I had a lot to say on this. For this reason I will split this review of gasbags in to three parts. This first part covers the basic physics of buoyancy and how various parameters can provide more lift. The following parts will cover the anatomy of gasbags and an example of how several gasbag species could fit together to form an aerial ecosystem.