THE MATHMOOR GROUND BIRD

APPEARANCE - SPECIAL ABILITIES - TERRITORY
HABITAT/BEHAVIOURDIET - MATING - MYTH/LORE

The Mathmoor is the largest Sarvonian ground bird, at a height of over two peds. It has thick legs and light, fur-like feathers, as well as a viciously curved beak. Its size makes it easy to see over the plains, but no smart predator would approach the Mathmoor. The Mathmoor is territorial and easily angered. In Northern Sarvonia, where the Mathmoors are most abundant, they are domesticated and ridden like horses.

Appearance. The Mathmoor is very tall, over two peds. The legs of the mathmoor makes up about half of the height; thick stocky legs with wide scales as protection against snakes and other small creatures. The mathmoor has a large head and a thick neck, with a curved beak for the eating of carrion. Wide grey eyes are good at detecting movement, but can only see well at close distance; as far as its feet. The mathmoor's size makes it incapable of flying; its wings have stunted to a little over a fore in length. The mathmoor's plumage varies from a cream-white to a green-black, with shades of brown and red-orange in between. Blotched mathmoors are quite rare and looked down upon as a sign of inbreeding.

The Mathmoor makes little noise, only small cooing and warking.
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Special Abilities. The Mathmoor is large; capable of carrying a person as a horse would. It is even capable of running faster, and is more protective than a horse would be. However, the riding of a mathmoor anywhere other than Northern Sarvonia is seen as being ridiculous; much like riding a giant Taenish.
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Territory. The Mathmoor is very territorial. If another bird gets too close, they will snap with their beaks and kick with their feet until one backs off.

The Mathmoor lives in the plains all over Northern Sarvonia. Some have been migrating further south, but are finding it hard to live, as other creatures have a good hold on the lands there.
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Habit/Behaviour. The mathmoor spends quite a bit of time hunting. When a mathmoor comes across a dead animal, it will begin feasting on it. Mathmoors will smell the flesh of the dead animal and come as well, and the first mathmoor will attack all other mathmoors as it tries to eat. This act looks very much like a sibling rivalry and is quite comical.

Mathmoors gather in groups, from single male mathmoors to a herd of 15 females, their young and a single male. The mathmoors gather in small clusters at night, curling up on the ground; elders digging holes and gathering their chicks inside, laying above the holes like a makeshift nest.
Male mathmoors live either alone or in bachelor groups. Those males established and having mated with females lead an entire herd of females and their young.

Domesticated mathmoors do much the same things as wild mathmoors, except in a smaller, enclosed area; their food given to them instead of discovering it. Domesticated mathmoors can be much more aggressive when it comes to food, but most of the time they are not; for feeding is at intervals.
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Diet. The mathmoor is mostly a meat eater, picking at the flesh of an already dead creature, or picking off small plains creatures. If a predator comes too close and a mathmoor attacks it, the mathmoor has been known to chase the creature down and kill it. Mathmoors also eat grasses, seeds and insects.
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Mating. Females are capable of breeding any time of the year, they do not have a heat cycle. However, the female's children must be at least a year old before she decides to mate again.

A male will approach a female, and circle her, cooing softly and nuzzling her. If she does not wish to mate, she will ignore him. If she wants to mate, she will return the advances in much the same way. Once the pair has decided to mate, the female will lay on the ground and the male will mate with her. The female will now follow the male, and become a part of the male's herd. The male will have anywhere from a single female to as many as 15 females in his herd, all at different stages of gestation. The females are not territorial to one another, only defensive of the male.

A week after mating, the female will lay a single blue-green egg, about two spans in diameter. She will dig a shallow hole for the egg and lay upon it to keep it warm.

Once the male has created a sizeable herd, he begins hunting for the females. He will bring a large assortment of foodstuffs back to the "nursery", rarely stopping to rest.

The female's egg takes roughly a month and a half to hatch, and once it does, a small featherless pink form is produced, about a span in size. The mother will baby the bird, eating and regurgitating her food for the baby. It will take about a month for the baby mathmoor to become fully feathered and capable of eating on its own.

Once the baby is capable of feeding itself, the mother will allow it out of the nest. All the baby mathmoors are quite social to one another, their mothers watching protectively. If another mother approaches a mathmoor's baby, she will attack. Also, the mathmoor mother must proctect her baby from the male, as he has a habit of being aggressive toward the babies.

It takes another two months for the babies to be self sufficient. Once this moment approaches, the mother and her child will leave the nursery. Sometimes several mothers will leave together, but it is accustomed that all females will leave the nursery, to make room for newly-acquired females.

At the age of a year, the baby mathmoor is fully grown and sexually mature. This is also the time that the mother will begin mating again. Courting begins, and the mathmoors will go their seperate ways, following their males. Male baby mathmoors are left behind when the mother is acquired by a male, and several males may make a bachelor herd. Mathmoors live 10-15 years.
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