Species Book: Desert Species Picture
Arrans, also known as ‘windbirds’, are kin to the Firebird and the Rainbird. These great birds are capable of not only carrying two humans, but of creating desert ‘haboobs’ with their wings. Arrans are omnivores, like the other desert species. Their large bodies place them at the top of the desert food chain - they are impressive hunters, falling on their prey from great heights.
These great birds often prefer the company of other birds - two arrans don’t often get along. Arrans show their power through the size of the flock that they keep - rival arrans will participate in wing fights to claim the other arran’s flock. These battles are often so violent that the desert echoes with thunder, and in some mythologies, these rolls of thunder give birth to thunderbirds. Flocks are not territory focused - they rove the desert looking for prey and water.
Arrans, along with Firebirds, Rainbirds and Moonbirds are considered elemental birds (in a way, thunderbirds are also considered elemental, but are not as rare). But unlike the other elemental birds, arrans are human-friendly. Arrans may take a human as part of their flock and may also consent to carrying a human to where they want to.
Arrans come in a variety of markings, often matching the territory that they grew up in. Arrans found in the desert will most likely have muted, brownish markings, while arrans raised in Iyore will carry greener traits.-----
Ixels are the dogs of the desert - they are only found in arid climate and dislike the feel of solid ground beneath their feet. Their emancipated looks have nothing to do with the creature’s nutrition; the loose skin allows the animal to keep cool in the heat of the sun. Their tails, which look like a clump of hair, are actually semi-rigid leathery flaps - used for cooling as well as territorial disputes; the edges are usually frayed, adding to the hair-like image. Their feet are designed for easy navigation in the sand and are extremely sensitive - they have no nails to be seen, but their toes narrow out to flat points covered in skin. They do not use their feet to fight, because of their sensitivity - instead, mature ixels are equipped with a set of sharp, short teeth used for hunting and defense. These teeth are fairly strong, but broken teeth are quickly shed and replaced.
Markings on ixels are minimal, if there are any to be seen at all.
They often run in packs of up to thirty, though smaller packs are more common because they are easier to care for. Each pack claims territory centered on the location of a spring or other source of water (they have been known to drink the water from ancient underground shrines) and fiercely defend their land from any intruders, regardless of species.
Corpons spend most of their days lazing in the heat of the sun, and hunting in the twilight hours. They range in size depending on their age and their eating habits, with the average adult being just over two feet in length. They are able to move swiftly across the sands of the desert, making them a difficult hunter to outrun. Corpons are not known to be venomous - they prefer to strangle their prey. They will eat whatever comes across their paths, but they prefer small rodents over anything else. If the hunting is scarce, corpons can survive by eating bits of cactus and small stones.
Corpons are solitary creatures - even families will split up and find their own space. While they live alone, they are mostly passive - other corpons or other species can pass through their hunting ground without fear of attack. Occasionally, another corpon will hunt in territory that is not its own. In these cases, the resident corpon will use the rattle on its tail to alert the intruding corpon to move along.
Desert wanderers are known to have the symbol of the corpon on their person, as they believe that the corpon is a symbol of survival - you will never find a corpon far from an oasis.-----