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Metals & Minerals
Horta - A repulsive rock creature that inhabited the subterranean world of the Planet Janus VI on episode No. 26 "Devil in the Dark" of the sci-fi series STAR TREK/NBC/1966-69.


The Horta was an intelligent creature composed of silicone that slithered through makeshift tunnels beneath the planet's surface. These natural born miners burned their way through rock formations by digesting minerals with an intense acid that excreted from its underside.

Their life cycle was 60,000 years at which time they all died with the exception of one creature who protected the storehouse of new eggs which would repopulate the underworld with a new race of Hortas.

Unfortunately, this egg chamber was damaged by a group of off-world miners who had set up drilling operations on the planet. Defending its children, the Horta killed over fifty miners.

Future attacks were prevented through the intervention of the Vulcan science officer Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy) from the starship Enterprise, who established mental contact with the creature, and helped the Horta to protect its silicone egg nodules. Starship physician, Dr. Leonard McCoy (DeForrest Kelly) patched the Horta's injuries with a bag of silicone-based cement.

Spock Mind-melds with the Horta
Spock links with the Horta's mind

TRIVIA NOTE: The seven-foot long, three-foot wide Horta creature was played by Janos Prohaska.

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