Thanator (Palulukan): 13 Facts About Pandora’s Apex Predator

“Avatar 2” is the highly anticipated sequel to the 2009 film “Avatar,” directed by James Cameron. The movie takes place in the same universe as the original film, set on the lush, blue-skinned alien moon of Pandora, and features a mix of live-action and computer-generated elements.

The film is set several years after the events of the first movie and will delve deeper into the cultures, technologies, and ecosystems of Pandora, with new alien creatures like Thanator or Palulukan. Here are some most intriguing facts about Thanator or Palulukan from Avatar: The Way Of Water.

1Na’vi Name Of Thanator Is Palulukan

Thanator (Palulukan) Avatar

The thanator is a carnivore that lives in Pandora’s forests and goes by the Na’vi name palulukan, which means “dry mouth bringer of fear.”. Xenobiologists currently think that it might be the top land predator on Pandora, despite the fact that many parts of the moon have yet to be explored. 

2Thanator Has Comparable Size To A Panther Or Lion

This enormous, strong, and ferocious animal, which is comparable to a panther or lion from Earth or the extinct inostrancevia, is exceptional in its capacity to rule its domain and terrorize other large and fierce terrestrial carnivores from Pandora. Even the Na’vi, who are renowned for their bravery and hunting prowess, are frightened by the creature’s approach.

3Thanator Is Considered As The Apex Predators Among Na’vi Hunters

Thanator (Palulukan) Avatar

It is considered to be the top land predator on the moon and is feared by even the bravest of the Na’vi hunters. This agile and muscular feline-like creature is characterized by its power and speed, allowing it to make prolonged runs and jumps with ease. It has sharp teeth and claws for ripping and tearing, as well as an armored tail that can deliver a deadly blow to defend itself against other thanators. 

Related Reads: 8 Mysterious Facts About Avatar’s Tree Of Souls

4Thanator Can Sense Its Prey Far From 13 Kms Away By Echolocation

Thanator (Palulukan) Avatar

With its highly developed senses, the thanator is capable of detecting its prey from as far as 13 kilometers away, depending on the atmospheric conditions.

The thanator has ten sensory spikes that emerge from armor plates surrounding the back of its head. Their purpose is unknown, but it’s believed they could aid in locating prey through means such as echolocation or another form of sensory pinpointing. The spikes also serve to make the animal look more intimidating. The armor plates are made of cartilage.

5Thanator Is Blessed With Razor-sharp Teeth, Armored Back & Sensory Quills

Thanator (Palulukan) Avatar

In addition to the sensory quills, the thanator also boasts an armored neck and back, a powerful jaw that can stretch wide, and razor-sharp teeth measuring 23 centimeters in length. Its skin is a gleaming black with ten sensory quills in bright red and yellow. Its upper lip can be pulled back to reveal even more teeth. 

6Thanator Has 6 Long Legs & 2 Set Of Gill Like Body Parts

The Na’vi, who are around 3 meters tall, can ride on the back of this formidable creature, which is about 6 meters long. It has six long legs and two sets of gill-like structures on each side of its neck. When searching for prey or sensing danger, the thanator can stand on its hind legs and raise its front body and two front legs, using its four back limbs for stability as it sniffs the air.

7Palulukan Prey In Its Territorial Boundary, Ranges Up To 300 Sq Kms

The Thanator is usually a solitary predator and tends to stay within its territorial boundaries, estimated to be about 300 square kilometers. It primarily hunts at night but may make exceptions if it is particularly hungry.

8Thanator Vs Colonel Quaritch

Thanator (Palulukan) Avatar

During his first mission on Pandora as an avatar, Toruk Makto Jake Sully was chased by a thanator through the forest after it frightened away a herd of Hammerhead Titanotheres that were threatening him. He narrowly escaped the predator by jumping off a waterfall.

Neytiri managed to form a bond with a thanator after her banshee mount, Seze, was killed in the final battle between the Na’vi alliance and the RDA’s SecOps. Instead of attacking her, The thanator voluntarily presented itself as Neytiri’s new mount in order to battle Colonel Quaritch, who was piloting an AMP suit. Although the thanator was able to destroy the suit’s gun, Quaritch ultimately killed it with his AMP knife, leaving Neytiri trapped underneath its body. Quaritch prepared to kill her, but Jake intervened just in time. Neytiri later managed to free herself and killed Quaritch with two arrows.

9Regardless Of Woods, They Are Also Occupy In Subarctic Areas

The thanator primarily resides on the jungle floor, but similar species have been seen in subarctic areas.

10Anurai Clan Respect Thanator & They Became Totem Of The Na’vi Culture

The Anurai Clan held the thanator in high esteem and regarded it as their totem animal. The clan engaged in the building of totems as a way to promote unity and trust among its members, and some members would attempt to tame a thanator as part of a rite of passage.

11Thanator Word Originates From The Greek Word

The name “thanator” likely originates from the Greek word θάνατος (thánatos), which means “death.”

12Thanator Is A Replacement Of Another Creature Skraath In The Movie Script

The concept of the thanator originated from a script written by James Cameron in the early 1980s, which was never used. The original name for the creature was “skraath,” but it was later changed to “manticore” in the 1995 Project 880 script.

13According To James Cameron, Thanator Will Win A Battle Against Alien Queen Or T-Rex

According to James Cameron’s original script, the thanator was so powerful that it could easily conquer a T-Rex and devour an Alien Queen for breakfast.