THE LE'TAN BIRD ("SWEET SONG BIRD")

APPEARANCE - SPECIAL ABILITIES - TERRITORY
HABITAT/BEHAVIOUR - DIET - MATING - USAGES - MYTH/LORE

The Le'Tan is one of the most majestic birds found on the entire continent of Nybelmar. Native to Shar’s jungles, the creature comes in two varieties, the more common tranquil blue Le’Tan (also known as "The Krean Le’Tan" due to the race’s proximity to the territory where they are most abundant) and the much rarer blazing orange (also known as "The Bird of the Orihirim", as their numbers are said to have severely dropped when the sect of Lillivear left). - Le'Tan are prized pets among the people of western Nybelmar. Though many people love the bird for different reasons, it is normally due to their comically curious nature and its unique, soothing song.

The Le'Tan Singing Bird

View picture in full size  Picture description. Here you can see a female Le'Tan in the process of serenading her male with the renowned morning bird song. Image drawn by Sheil.

Appearance. From the tip of the Le'Tan’s yellow beak to the floor, the bird is usually just over a fore tall. It has a wingspan of three fores and normally weighs just over two hebs. The entirety of the Le’Tan’s body is covered in their respected feathers (blue or orange), except the leathery black skin that covers the bird’s feet. The Le’Tan has layered feathers on its wings.

Though the wings of the orange variety have not been studied numerous times, the wings of the blue variety are known to have a few darkish green feathers around the top edges, that become lighter and longer, then eventually blue. Underneath this layer of feathers are much longer feathers with a vontromarine blue hue. The feathers of the Le’Tan are very soft to touch, and are very strong, meaning that you can grab a Le’Tan by its feathers without tearing any.

Male Le’Tan have larger heads than females, and their skulls are longer, giving them a much more authoritarian appearance than their more sweet appearing gender counterparts. Male Le’Tan also adopt a proud stance, which involves them always looking slightly upwards, though this can give them an uninterested appearance. Females on the other hand tend to pose in a way that makes them appear very naïve and optimistic, slightly titling their heads. Males are known to normally have rich green eyes, while  the females have hazel.

On the tip of each of the Le’Tan’s three toed feet are small black claws that gleam in the sunlight. The Le’Tan uses them to grip onto whatever tree it lands on, as well as holding onto the fruit, which makes up the staple of its diet. The beak of the Le'Tan is quite flat, becoming rounded at the end. The beak is used in a way so that it severs the Le'Tan's food in one bite, breaking it up into smaller pieces for it to swallow.
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Special Abilities. The Le’Tan is famed for its beautiful and versatile singing voice. Nocturnally, the Le’Tan have a habit of coming to the windows of homes and singing soothing lullabies to the residents. It is not actually known why the Le'Tan choose to do this, but some believe it is due to the decoration of Krean homes. The average Krean home has two candles at each window, one to say farewell to day and one to welcome the day. There is actually a long forgotton superstition that leads back to the first days of the Twin Kingdom. The superstition was that if one did not cherish the day, the night would cover the jungles eternally, much like a neglected house cat, will flee its owner. Anyway, the Le'tan (being as curious as they are) are always keen to investigate something as strange as small lights flickering at the windows. When they land to investigate, they say the Le'Tan are so amused by this sight that they sing their famous lullaby tune, almost as way of laughing. Le’Tan also possess a whole variety of songs, the most beautiful possessed by the females, their mating song. It is so delicate the Krean say it can almost instantly send anybody into a deep sleep.

Besides this notable ability, the Le’Tan also possess considerable intelligence. They know which fruits are poisonous, which branches can support their weight (though there are few that cannot) and also have a beautiful language. They are able to alert each other of predators, or locate lost young, with various forms of calls. There are actually peculiar instruments that are used to imitate the birdcalls so that they are attracted to a specific point.
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Territory. Both varieties are exclusive to the Jungles of Shar, though their locations differ. The largest abundance of the Krean Le’Tan are (unsurprisingly) found in the jungles once inhabited by the magnificent tribe, though the Bird of the Orihirim has a much less well-known location, though people believe they tend to gravitate towards the more southernly jungles of the Saroshar.
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Habitat/Behaviour. Le’Tan are very independent creatures that live in mating pairs that last for the entire life (about ten years) of the bird. If their mate dies, they will never mate again. Le’Tan are very curious creatures, and spend a long period of their day aerially investigating the jungles. When they are not exploring the rainforests, they are very attentive to their mates. The females will always serenade their mates at sunrise, and the males will do the same at sundown. Though the songs are very different, they are equally beautiful.

Le’Tan also have a love of colourful and strange objects, and will collect various things such as shed snakeskin and fallen jegra feathers, which they will give to their mates as gifts. Le’Tan are very sensible in their eating habits, and once a week the pair will scour the jungles for sweet fruit such as that of the keelo tree. They will collect a supply that will keep them satiated until they do the same thing seven days later.
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Diet. The diet of the Le’Tan consists almost entirely of succelent jungle fruits such as keelofruit, though they have been known to eat small insects if the situation becomes dire.
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Mating. A Le’Tan mating pair will last the life of the Le’Tan concerned. When a Le’Tan reaches sexual maturity (normally at the age of one and a half years) they will take part in that seasons "Great Gathering". Though it is not known how they navigate to the point, all of the unpaired Le’Tan will meet at one point. A three day period will be given for them all to arrive. Those who do not arrive must wait for the next year’s gathering, at which time they will be considered very undesirable.

The sunrise of the next day the males will all be gathered on one tree, and all the females gathered on another. They will all simultaneously sing their special mating song, creating a beautiful birdsong sympathy. This session lasts for a period of three days, due to the permanence of the pairing, confirming their matching is very important. When both a male and a female notice that their tunes "match" they will fly across the space in between two trees together and then away to a different location. This will happen almost as simulataneously as the mating songs begin, leading to a blanket of blue (or orange) to cover the sky.

A mating pair will only mate once every three years, with a clutch of a maximum of two eggs. The chicks are looked after extensively by both parents until they reach maturity.
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Usages. The Le’Tan’s beautiful song is a sought after tune on the continent of Nybelmar, as well as by those who have heard of it in the Santharian kingdom. They are commonly sold as pets, though one must be careful to take them as chicks, as a Le’Tan separated from its mating partner refuses to sing.
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Myth/Lore. The rare orange variety of Le’Tan is believed to have some form of natural relationship with Orihirim, since when the "Light Humans" left the jungles after the joining of the Aestera and the Lillivear their numbers are said to have severely dropped (though due to the age of this information the Compendium cannot confirm this). They are thought to be much more intelligent than the blue variety, though they are much more shy.

Due to the soemwhat strange appearence of the birds, a saying evolved within the Peninsula of Shar and the surrounding areas. 'S/he may have a Le'Tan's voice [though]'. It is used to say how somebody may appear unattractive or peculiar may have a hidden talent (or personality trait) that cancels it out.
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 Date of last edit 17th Awakening Earth 1667 a.S.

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