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Overview

Regarded as one of Dreyrull's largest, and most dangerous, predators, groburr are opportunistic omnivores, eating both plants and animals as available. They are known to both hunt and scavenge for their food. While they are respected as powerful creatures and potentially dangerous predators, they are also well regarded as somewhat intelligent and resourceful, as well as being very devoted to their young.

Appearance

There are three main subspecies of groburr, with the smallest and least aggressive variety dwelling in the rainforests of Sundast and Jiskadar , and the largest and most aggressive roaming the icy tundras and mountains of Siyari and Northern Jiskadar . A third variety, falling between the two extremes in size and temperament, is common throughout the temperate forests of Hasseran , Sundast, and Jiskadar.

All groburr have large, domed heads, with high, steeply sloping foreheads and round, deep-set dark eyes. Their bodies are built low and stocky, with massive, stout legs. Their paws are slightly elongated and plantigrade (flat-walking), almost hand-like, with five clawed toes on each foot; the forepaws have longer claws than the rear paws. Their tails are rather short and stubby, almost paddle like, and their ears are rounded and close to their heads.

Subspecies Variations

Forest Groburr are referred to simply as groburr, since they are the most common variety. They can be found in virtually all temperate forests in Hasseran, Jiskadar, and Sundast, except where they have been pressured to leave by high levels of human activity, as is the case in the forests immediately surrounding Holdensvale and New Timbervast . These groburr grow to weigh 400-600 lbs. as adults, with the males about 30% larger and heavier than the females. Exceptionally large male forest groburr have been estimated to weigh as much as 800 lbs. When on all fours, the adults are about 3-5 feet tall at the shoulder. When rising to their hind legs, they are 5-9 feet tall. They are able to move for short distances by walking, similar to a human, on their hind legs, which enables them to reach greater heights when foraging, or be more intimidating to opponents and prey. Their coloration ranges from light brown, almost cream, to medium browns, reddish browns, and dark black-browns. Their fur is thick and shaggy, but not overly long, except for around their necks. Spikes grow from their head and along the back of their thick necks, to their shoulders. Spikes range in size from about 4-6 inches on their heads and tails, to 1-2 feet upon their necks and shoulders, with the largest spikes on their shoulders. The claws on their forefeet are 2-3 inches long, and gently curved, with dark black bases lightening to brown at the tips. Their teeth are designed for an omnivorous diet, with large molars in the back and serrated teeth in the front. Their canines are elongated into impressive saber teeth, reaching lengths of 6-9 inches. Their spikes range from dark cream to medium grey-brown, sometimes black.

Cave Groburr are the largest and most fearsome in appearance, and inhabit the mountains and tundras of Siyari and North Jiskadar. They can reach weights in excess of 800 to 1,500 lbs, standing 6-9 feet high at the shoulder when on all fours, and a daunting 8-12 feet tall when rearing (for short periods) to their hind legs. Males are again larger than females. Spikes for both genders are impressive, ranging in size from a foot tall on the head and tail, to as many as four feet on their shoulders. Their claws, likewise, are long and thick, reaching lengths in excess of five inches in many cases. Their saber tooth canines average lengths of 7-10 inches. Their fur is longer and thicker, coming in lighter shades of cream and grey, sometimes with lighter "cape" markings along their shoulders. Their spikes are often white or very pale creme, sometimes grey, and never brown or black. Their claws are black at the base, lightening to grey at the tip.

Lesser Groburr are the smallest variety, dwelling in the rainforests of Sundast and South Jiskadar. They weigh only 100-300 lbs, standing 2-4 feet tall at the shoulder on all fours, and rising to just 5-6 feet when on their hind legs. They are more adept than their larger relatives at bipedal locomotion, relying on it as a mode of transport almost as much as falling to all fours. Their forepaws sport shorter, thicker claws, only 2 inches long, with slightly more dexterous digits that enable them to grapple with tree limbs very well. They are expert climbers and diggers. Their spikes are far more diminutive than their larger cousins, only 2 inches or so on the head and tail, and up to 6-9 inches along the neck and shoulders. Their fur is shorter and very silky, with a much thinner coat due to the warm, wet climates they live in. They come in hues of black, rusty brown, and golden yellow, often with lighter cape markings along their shoulders and sometimes spotted patches along their backs. Spikes are often light cream in color, ranging to deep gold. Their claws are dark brown, lightening to beige at the tips.

Temperament

There is a human and furr adage that says "A groburr in the woods is not to be feared, unless you tell the groburr you are taking their woods." This holds more or less true, as the forest dwelling groburr tend to be fairly non-confrontational, unless they feel their territory, young, or food source are under threat. Wandering individuals are usually more inclined to leave an area that has existing human or furr activity and find another place that is more peaceful to find food and shelter. It is when other creatures - two legged or not - invade an established groburr hunting or living territory, particularly when there is a den with cubs involved - that they will stand their ground and become quite dangerous. When riled to anger, a groburr, particularly a mother with cubs, can be relentless in attacking and pursuing any creature they view as a threat, a rival, or potential prey. Weapons will not dissuade them, and they will maintain an enraged charge and attack until their target, or they, fall dead.

They are more reserved towards aershaa, with a healthy respect for the physical and magical powers of their fellow predators. They will normally acquiesce a hunting ground to an aershaa, even if the aershaa is invading their established territory, unless times are particularly lean. Though they will steal kills from other predators, like the big cats, they are far more reluctant to try the same with an aershaa, unless they are on the verge of starvation, or the aershaa is a far smaller size than they. When faced with an aershaa's elemental attacks, they will be far more likely to back down, unless they have been angered by hunger, or a threat to their young - the latter of which there is no backing down from.

The rainforest-dwelling Lesser Groburr is more docile, actually acting almost friendly towards other creatures; this is possibly due to the fact that it is primarily an herbivore, whereas its larger relations are opportunistic carnivores that regard other creatures as either competition or possible dinner.

Diet

Both forest and cave groburr are opportunistic omnivores, meaning they eat whatever is readily available. The diet of the forest dwelling subspecies trends more heavily towards roots, berries, and smaller prey like mawz and the occassional rikkita or lappir , supplemented by meat scavenged from carcasses. The mountain and tundra dwelling cave groburr, however, are more active hunters and scavengers, relying primarily on kills they make themselves, or steal from another predator, for their sustenance. Cave groburr dwelling in or near the more temperate, forested areas of Siyari and Jiskadar will supplement their diet with saplings and berries. Both varieties are exceptionally fond of fish, particularly fatty cold-water varieties, and the forest groburr are expert river fishers.

The Lesser Groburr is primarily an herbivore, specialized in eating roots, berries, and various leafy plants that grow from the forest floor, as well as fruits and nuts that grow higher in the canopy or fall to the ground. They will supplement their diet with insects and the occasional mawz, but do not typically hunt. They get their protein mostly from insects, fish, and the rare scavenged carcass.

Habitat

The standard, or Forest, Groburr prefers the temperate forests of Hasseran and Jiskadar. They will make dens only when they are hibernating, or have cubs, sleeping out in the open during other times of the year. The rainforest-dwelling Lesser Groburr is native to the jungles of Sundast and Jiskadar, with the largest population in Sereven. They will maintain a series of year-round dens, which they will switch among depending on food availability and weather, though they will also sleep in the open (usually up a tree.) Cave Groburr, as their name implies, are fond of dwelling in caves, and maintain a single cave den year-round, defending it jealously from all comers. Their home range is usually in the mountains or surrounding frozen tundra, though some are known to hunt in the more temperate forests in the colder ranges of Jiskadar and the southern areas of Siyari.

Lore & Culture

Groburr are held in high regard by various furr cultures, regarded both as potent protectors and loving mothers. They are held to be wise in the ways of the seasons, particularly when it comes to fish runs and ripening fruit. The Draians consider the Lesser Groburr to be almost on par with the furrs of Sereven, due to its gentler nature and habit of observing everything very intently. They are believed to be a kind of watcher, or guide, for those lost within the jungle.

(Initial Concept by Stryde, Details & Writeup by Crystal Kemi 02:07, August 30, 2012 (UTC))

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