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Bio-Geneticist Landing

Kitti Ping Yung, who was sometimes referred to as "Kitti Ping" for short, came to Pern along with all the other colonists. She is the creator of Pernese dragons.



Emily Boll wondered how «under the suns» the expedition had lucked out enough to include the most eminent geneticist in the Federated Sentient Planets — the only human who had ever been trained by the Eridani.

Kitti and Wind Blossom, sometimes referred to as "Wind Blossom Ping", intended to use the Eridani techniques to alter the next generation appropriately. The plan was for at least some of the animals to be tailored to make the required enzymes in their own glands, instead of using symbiotic bacteria as their ancestors had on Earth. In order that the colonists could ensure the adaptability of Terran animals to Pern, permission to use certain of the advanced biogenetic techniques of the Eridanis — mainly mentasynth, gene paring, and chromosome enhancements — had been grudgingly granted.

First Fall[]

After Thread started falling, Kitti and Wind Blossom lent their special skills to analyzing the life forms as soon as samples were brought in. Unfortunately, too many samples, acquired at considerable danger to the volunteers, were found apparently moribund in the metal or heavy plastic containers in which they had been contained. Seemingly, after about twenty minutes, all the frenetic activity, the replications of the original strand several thousand times into big wriggling “sausages,” ceased.

When it had been shown that the dragonets were immensely valuable in both warning against and even fighting Thread, zoologist Pol Nietro and biologist Bay Harkenon worked under and with Kitti to give the dragonets mentasynth, something that made the indigenous animals even more valuable to the colonists.

On behalf of the Pern colony, Paul Benden and Emily Boll asked Kitti to lend her special knowledge to enhancing the dragonets and having them evolve into a semblance of the old Terran beasts called dragons. The governors feared Kitti would say no to such enormously invasive tampering, knowing full well how Kitti felt about bioengineering beyond simple adjustments to adapt creatures to new ecological parameters. To their immense relief, Kitti agreed. She then began the gigantic task, aided by a team of scientists which included Wind Blossom, Pol Nietro and Bay Harkenon. The project got top priority and only had to yield to the actual fighting of Thread.

One day, while everything was still «proceeding vigorously» under Kitti's eminent guidance, Wind Blossom found her mother dead at the keyboard of the electron microscope. «PROGRAM COMPLETED» flashed on the screen. The screen displayed a dazzling series of computations and ended with «REMOVE UNIT! DANGER IF UNIT IS NOT IMMEDIATELY REMOVED!»

The label on the last egg cell Kitti had produced said: «Trial 2684/16/M: nucleus #22A, mentasynth Generation B2, boron/silicon system 4, size 2H; 16.204.8». Bay took the final legacy of the brilliant technician to the gestation chamber and put it carefully beside the forty-one similar units that held the hopes of Pern.

Since Kitti had left copious notes and instructions on how to proceed, it appeared that she had anticipated everything but her own death.

Personality and traits[]

Kitti was already in her tenth decade when she arrived on Pern. She was a small, frail lady (half Paul Benden's height) who kept some mobility with the help of prostheses.


Wind Blossom was called the daughter of Kitti Ping Yung in the UK edition of Dragonsdawn and both the UK and US editions of Dragonsblood, but was referred to as her granddaughter in the US edition of Dragonsdawn. In Dragonsblood Wind Blossom is said to be 79 years of age in 56 AL (during the First Pass). This means she would have been biologically 23 or 24 years old (having been in cryosleep for the 15 year journey) upon arriving on Pern. As Kitti Ping Yung was already in her tenth decade by the time of the First Fall, this would mean Kitti gave birth to Wind Blossom while in her late 70s at the very least. While speaking with the dying Emily Boll during the Fever Year, Wind Blossom was questioned about her own age and how old her mother was when she gave birth, and she confirmed that Eridani genetic manipulation had been performed that slowed the aging process and its detrimental effects on Kitti Ping. Wind Blossom either had the same techniques performed on herself or inherited them naturally. It is likely that the reference to Kitti as her grandmother was an editing error in the US edition of Dragonsdawn.