The Cervulgaris Picture

A school project for the Creature Design course. We were told to choose two existing animals and create a new "mythological" creature by merging them. We had to come up with a scientific (basically evolutionary) description of the creature, as well as a description of the mythology that natives of it's planet may have come up with about it.

Cervulgari were considered in mythology to be benevolent spirits of the rainforest, and in some cultures, even avatars or actual gods of the planet. Some cervulgari were domesticated as fishing aids by local tribesmen. They have been considered symbols of adroitness (thus often considered muses of athletics), musical prowess (due to the range of vocals in their snorkels), social flexibility (due to their rare ability to survive almost equally on land and in water), camaraderie (due to their cooperative activities during mating season), and chivalry (due to their efforts to protect female harems from opposing groups and/or predators).

As they are understood in mythology, cervulgari possess shape-shifting powers that are used against tribal hunters. They were believed to change forms and throw their voices to misdirect hunters so that the hunter may pass a tree or a lesser animal, which would then return to its cervulgaris form and consume the hunter. As a result, the cervulgaris also became a symbol of misdirection or illusion-- a symbol used by magicians and "wizards/sorcerors" of the native tribes.
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