When the turians were introduced to the galactic community, an asari diplomat poetically described their homeworld, Palaven, as "a silver world of fortresses and fire." Because Palaven's weak magnetic field is a poor shield from its sun, most of the planet's animal life developed metallic carapaces as defenses against solar radiation. Its photosynthetic life is similarly impressive, shutting down vulnerable metabolic processes during daylight hours and repairing cellular damage at night.
The visible fortifications of Turian cities reflect their martial society, but since joining the galactic community, internal conflicts have become honor-bound affairs with few casualties among noncombatants. These city fortifications have proven no match for the Reapers and their aggressive bombardment of Palaven.