The small, brown, delicate
frame of the “Strata” is no hint to its milk production. This animal is well
suited for the barren, dry climate it is situated in, and thrives there, under
the close care of humans, of course. The milk
production of this tan sweetie is enough to supply
Strata with milk, butter, cheese and cream.
Appearance. Strata cows are generally shorter, leaner, and overall more “ladylike” when compared to its northern cousins. Calves grow horns that can be cut off at a young age, and they will not regenerate. Females have udders, a pink bag between its hind legs that grows and produces the milk. This Strata Cow may reach a ped in height, although this is only in peak conditions and health. Their weight also varies with their health and surroundings, but a 650-pound average cow is not uncommon.
Special Abilities. The Strata Milking Cow has the wonderful ability to produce massive amounts of healthy and rich milk. It is also domesticated, and these cows are generally very gentle around humans, while their calves are playful with children.
Territory. This breed is only often found in the regions of Strata, north to Bardavos and there are many farms built in and around the desert. This breed of dairy cow oddly enough does very well in the heat, even extreme heat, as that is where they produce their maximum amount of milk.
Habitat/Behaviour. Dairy cows as the Strata Cow are milked twice daily, sometimes more, and after you establish a pattern with the animal, it will greet you at the same time in the same place day in day out. Some say this is a mental clock, others say its just because its udder is so full, and its uncomfortable for the animal, so it goes to where you can relieve it. The animals travel in herds, with many cows “belonging” to one bull. Bullfights are not uncommon, and are usually watched by interested humans, as the male battles for the rights to breed any certain group of females. Cows can live anywhere from 4-9 years in a natural life span. This span is shorter for this breed than many, as the harsh wind and dryness constantly pound at the animal.
Diet. Cows generally eat a large storage of dried, “baled” feed, of both the grass variety, and grain. This is brought south by traders, and is sold to the farmers at a fair price. In need, however, a cow may eat any vegetation it can find, as with four separate stomachs, digestion is rarely a problem.
Mating. Cows usually come into “heat” once a year, around the middle of summer, and calve out in early spring. They have only one birth a year, although it may be of more than one offspring. The calf nurses its mother for about 6 months, then is weaned off. At one and a half years of age, the animal is an adult, so the females are bred and the males are driven off, to find their own herd.
Origin. Drafas Tristin brought the first Strata Cows with him in 1648, when he left to find new lands. Where that cow came from, no one knows. But since afterwards, these hardy little beasts have become adapted to the surroundings, and there they belong.
Information provided by Ralhag