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Striped Badger

Predator mount of the Dwarves

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[top]Abstract

The Striped Badger, or the All Seeing Eye in the dwarfen tongue, is the equivalent to the horse, worg and/or great panther to the smaller races of Aelyria.

[top]Physical Appearance

Measuring easily six to eight feet in length nose to tail, standing about three feet in height from shoulders to claws and weighing from 400 to over 500 pounds, the Striped Badger is easily the largest known member of the badger family. However, it should be noted that the male Striped Badger are somewhat smaller than their female counterpart.

The face of the Striped Badger is dominated by a large snout like nose, which able it to detect the faintest of smells from many miles away. The Striped Badger also possesses two small dark round eyes situated on every side of its snout like nose, and two rounded ears upon the side of its head. The most eye-catching feature of the Striped Badger are the many fine black and white stripes, which is common with all badgers, that covers its face running from its nose to the back of its neck; and also gives this particular badger its name.

The massive barrel-like-body of a Striped Badger, which is considerably larger in size, proportional, to its head is usually grey/black in colour, while its underbelly and legs are completely black. Upon its four firm and wide feet are four un-retractable claws that are used by a Striped Badger to dig, kill its prey and to defend itself from attack. As well as these claws the Striped Badger process a set of jaws filled with jagged teeth. The bite of a Striped Badger is quite strong; although it is no where as powerful as the legendary Great Panther, steed of the Pantheri Knights.

It is not unusual for a Striped Badger to reach speeds of up to 40 mph. However, given it’s larger than normal size this speed can only be maintained for short periods of time; even less when carrying a rider.

[top]Climate and Terrain

The Striped Badgers are known to range throughout most of what is nowadays called the Arium and Centripax Provinces of the Aelyrian Empire. Usually sighted within mountainous habitats, Striped Badgers are believed to prefer the security of mountains over grassy plains, and as such are believed to be found within other mountainous provinces of the empire; although this has never been confirmed.

[top]Diet

In the wild Striped Badgers must consume a moderate amount of meat for many sources every brightening in order to survive. Having a preference for smaller sized mammals such as rabbits and mouse, insects and grubs. However that being said the Striped Badger is also a hunter of opportunity and has been known to steal ‘kills’ of larger mammals off other predators making them part scavengers.

In hunting it uses its superior smelling ability to track prey from many miles away above or below ground. Using its un-retractable claws and jagged teeth, a Striped Badger will usually try and injury its prey and let it die through blood loss than to try and physical kill it itself. It is for this reason that Striped Badgers prefer to hunt smaller mammals. However Striped Badgers have also been observed on several occasions to have driven off other predators like wolves and bears from its territory, and to have tackled larger prey in times of need. It is for these reasons that the dwarfen race chose this animal to be their steed of war.

[top]Organization

There are two types of family structures in which the Striped Badger is found within Aelyria. The most common family structure is a Clan, perhaps named after the Dwarfen Clan Systems. A Clan consists of between two to fourteen badgers, related and/or unrelated, all living within a single underground warren system within a defined territory; usually several square miles. A Clan is led by a dominant unrelated male and female Striped Badger whom usually, but not always, have exclusive breeding rights within a Clan.

The other type of family structure is a solitary, rogue badgers; nearly always a male. This rogue has chosen to leave its warren in search of an unrelated female to breed with, or been driven off by another male from its old Clan. A rogue Striped Badger will travel widely looking, and hoping, to find any unattended/unguarded females willing to mate with it. It has been known for rogue males to take over existing Clans by challenging and defeating the current dominant male, or by starting a completely new clan with a younger ‘daughter’ of a mating pair from an already established Clan.

[top]Combat

Unlike the more cunning Great Panther or more aggressive worg, Striped Badgers relies more upon its physical size and strength to overpower its opponents than quick attacks and kills. Having neither the superior speed or aggressive of other mounts, rider and mount alike relies upon superior dwarfen armour to withstand attack in order to get within striking distances of its opponent.

Once within striking distances of its opponent, Striped Badgers use their short, but impressively quick bursts of speed to surprise opponents. Using this previously unforeseen quickness, Striped Badgers will try and use their massive bulk to its advantage and shoulder charge, and hopefully knock over an opponent before attacking its defenseless underbelly. When attacking Striped Badgers relies heavily upon its eight un-retractable claws on its front two feet and its jaw of jagged teeth to wound and kill its opponent.

A consequence of being bitten by a Striped Badger is that due to the rotten meat decomposing between their teeth, wounds have been known to become infected within a matter of hours, and if not treated death is not uncommon.

[top]Special Abilities

Over the years in which the dwarfen race has used Striped Badgers as their mounts, a process of selective breeding has occurred. This selective breeding, with the help of the Alchemists, has been trying to produce a more superior mount for use by the dwarfen clans. This process has resulted in the domesticated clans of Striped Badgers owned by the dwarfen race to have the ability to alight their white stripes upon their head. This process, which gives the meaning to the name All Seeing Eye, has enabled the dwarfen race to explore deeper underground without risking setting off invisible flammable gases found underground with torches.

As well as this lighting ability, the superior smelling ability of the Striped Badger has also been effected by this selective breeding process. Due to the realisation that the common enemies of the dwarfen race were members of the elfin and orcish races of Aelyrian Striped Badgers have been specifically trained to react to the smell of elves and orcs in an aggressive manner. This now natural reaction to these races has resulted in several serious incidents since joining the empire, and it is for this reason that their use by the Imperial Legions is limited, and indeed Striped Badgers can only truly be used safely in all dwarfen armies. However, it should be noted that Striped Badgers have been known to accept members of the Gnome, Halfling and rodenti races as riders.

[top]Resistances/Weaknesses

Striped Badgers, like most undomesticated animals, are very resilient to pain and can survive in anything but the most testing of climate conditions, for an extended period of time. Other than this, Striped Badgers have no other special inherent resistances or immunities.

[top]Other Notable Information

Training a Striped Badger uses many of the techniques and methods that have been developed over the ages for training other more common mounts of war like the warhorse.

[top]Credit

Credit goes to Coulter Minith


Created by Nimh, October 21, 2014 at 10:30 AM
Last edited by Nimh, November 2, 2014 at 08:12 AM
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