Tundra/ Arctic
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Comments: 8
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Rating: 3.5833
Condition: Normal
ID: 1859


December 3, 2005, 1:07 pm

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Bulral have the frame of a wooly mammoth, but are entirely covered with white fur like a polar bear.  Instead of a single trunk with long tusks, Bulral have no tusks and four trunks surrounding their mouth, and each trunk is barbed with small thorns.  They are fierce and solitary hunters who have a bizarre friendship with the hotheads.

For three days we travelled away from the cursed hotheads, without any signs of life.  We were nearing the Great Ice Pillar on the fourth day when trouble came charging at us.  We were passing through a field of icy mountains and hills when one object that had originally looked like a boulder rose up on great elephantine legs and began to charge.  We fled from the hideous beast, a mix of white fur and tentacles flopping around behind us.  It was closing on us quickly and it was clear we would be forced to fight.  I grabbed Furtham, my squire, and skidded to a halt as a saw the field before us pocked with icy holes.  It was time for us to turn and fight the great white beast.     

-excerpt from the journal of Sir Orin of Veda, Knight of the Chalice, describing his flight from a mighty Bulral.  
Full Description
Bulral have the frame of a wooly mammoth, but are entirely covered with white fur like a polar bear.  Instead of a single trunk with long tusks, Bulral no tusks, and four trunks surrounding their mouth, and each trunk is barbed with small thorns.  
Bulral are aggressive solitary hunters, and will charge large prey upon sight.  They can attack either with their barbed trunks or by trampling their prey.
Bulral are have an animal intelligence level, similar to that of a bear, but as noted do not associate with others of their kind, primarily because of the stress of finding food.  Occasionally they pair up to mate, and during this period the male will stay with the female until the newborn is able to hunt on his own.  Then all three will go their separate ways and likely never meet again.  
It is not uncommon for a bulral to form a bizarre symbiotic relationship with a pack of hotheads if they are in the area.  Because many of the deer or moose-like creatures the bulral hunt can often outrun a single bulral, the great beasts will often chase their prey towards a field of hothead holes.  It must either run more slowly, letting the bulral catch it with its trunks, or risk falling into the pits, where the hotheads and bulral share their feast.  The hotheads benefit because many animals grow to recognize the circles of thinned ice, and will avoid them except when panicked.  In some cases hotheads will gather around a bulral and huddle together to keep each other warm.  Apparently bulral recognize the value of this partnership, because they do not eat their furry little friends despite their proximity.     
Additional Information
1) Although Bulral have been written up in context of the hotheads, they should be complete without them. 
2)Bulral taste absolutely horrible and have few natural predators because of this.  Hotheads will release them from pits if they fall in, and only the fearsome sket (link at right) will eagerly prey on bulral for meat.  Humans occasionally hunt Bulral for their warm fur, but it is usually considered more danger than it is worth.
3) (For those of you without ice in your world) There is a variant of the Bulral that live in more temperate climates.  Instead of the white fur of a polar bear they have more typical brown fur like a standard wooly mammoth or brown bear.  They live in jungles, and their trunks are green, to mimic the vines around them.  Despite their great size their coloring affords them surprisingly good camouflage, and they use this to their advantage.  Temperate bulral will occasionally team up with the temperate hotheads, but more often will use swampy areas, rivers or quicksand/marshy areas to trap their prey and force combat.

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Comments ( 8 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

December 3, 2005, 13:07
Updated: Going public...
Michael Jotne Slayer
December 17, 2005, 20:57
I have to drive my players north for this one.
The diary introduction provides life and flavour.
The rest is as it should be; solid, detailed and... big.

Voted Michael Jotne Slayer
December 17, 2005, 20:58
Only voted
Voted CaptainPenguin
December 17, 2005, 21:53
Well, I like it, but I don't think I would use it... Some "fantasy animals" (this, things like displacer beasts, other weird-ass animals like tigers with tentacles and wolves with wings) I would never use, because I just think they are kind of... I dunno', not fitting to my tastes, I guess. But I (generally) don't vote on personal preference.

Voted Cheka Man
May 8, 2006, 17:07
They fit well into the ecology.
Voted manfred
May 9, 2006, 3:34
Neat on each own, the two lifeforms together are a good idea (and quite a threat).
Voted axlerowes
November 1, 2012, 17:32
I like my fantasy fauna, but this feels more like shell of an idea. Anyway not bad.
Voted valadaar
March 7, 2017, 12:22
I like Arctic creatures, and this is certainly an interesting one. Odd for a carnivore to have the frame of a herbivore, I personally would have these as omnivores like brown bears. These could easily be used as creatures on an Alien planet.

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