Senalaks were plants sometimes deployed as security measures by the Yuuzhan Vong. Consisting of a thin, knee-high stalk, senalaks, when disturbed, released a meter-long thorny cord that would flail around, capturing or killing nearby beings. During the Yuuzhan Vong War, senalak fields were used on the worldship Baanu Rass and later around a prisoner-of-war camp on the planet Selvaris as security fields.
Biology and appearance
Senalaks were plants composed of knee-high stalks as thin as a finger that were topped with a blue cap. When disturbed by a foreign object, the cap released a meter-long strand of barbed cord that would whip around for a few seconds. Senalak roots were nearly as tangled and thorny as the barbed cords that the cap released and reached a fair distance under the surface of the ground. Growing in fields and able to be cultivated, senalaks could survive both in a vacuum or on a terrestrial surface, and they thrived in the tropical jungles of the planet Selvaris. Due to their coloration and height, senalaks resembled ice spikes.
During the Yuuzhan Vong War—fought primarily between the New Republic and the extra-galactic Yuuzhan Vong species for control of the galaxy—the invading Yuuzhan Vong used senalaks as security fields around important land structures, relying on the barbed cords of the plants to kill or capture any intruders. In 27 ABY, senalaks were deployed around the spaceport of the Yuuzhan Vong worldship Baanu Rass, though the field was compromised by a Jedi team that used the Force to push the stalks down, prompting the senalaks to release their strands of thorns before anyone reached them. At the end of the war on Selvaris, despite the senalaks cultivated around a Yuuzhan Vong prisoner-of-war camp located there, a quartet of prisoners managed to escape the camp after digging a tunnel underneath the field.
Behind the scenes
Senalaks first appeared in the 2001 novel Star by Star, an installment of The New Jedi Order series by author Troy Denning. Later appearing in the last book of the series, James Luceno's The Unifying Force, released in 2003, the plants also received an entry in 2008's The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia. The encyclopedia incorrectly states that the Jedi team encountered senalaks on the planet Myrkr rather than aboard the Baanu Rass, which was in Myrkyr's orbit at the time, as presented in Star by Star.