THE SHINGAR CAT

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

The Shingar is a truly a gem of the cat world with it’s beautiful spotted coat and strong, agile figure. There is something mystic and mysterious about these creatures, raising stories and suspicions about these cats ranging from appearing out of no where to turning into shadows and disappearing away.

Appearance. The Shingars’ most magnificent attribute, its coat, has a background of tawny to yellow, which lightens to white on the belly, the sides of the legs, and under the neck. There is a very intricate design pattern on the pelage of the Shingar, consisting of rosettes with dark markings in the center that gradually become smaller until they appear as dark spots on the legs, head, tail, and belly. A rare breed of Shingars are black, but even they, in the right light, are spotted. Usually these ebony Shingars appear more often in forests in the far south.

The Shingars’ head is large and rounded, with small ears. The length of one of these elegant beasts is 2 to 3 peds, including a tail of about 2 fores. The maximum size of a Shingar is about 3 pygges and the minimum is about 2 pygges. The reason for this wide gap is that the female Shingars are about a fifth smaller than the males.
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Special Abilities. Despite their size, the Shingars are good at climbing trees using their strong, durable claws. They’re also more aquatic than most cats, not minding to take a dip in order to catch a fish or two. Return to the top

Territory. The largest population of this beautiful cat exist in Southern Santharia, mainly in the Sharadon Forest and Auturian Woods, as well as in the Ssuthern area of the Zeiphyrian Forest.
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Habitat/Behaviour. The Shingar prefers warm, humid climates and stays exlusively in forests and woods. They like to be able to gain cover in bushes and trees, especially when hunting. Usually they are so well hidden that their prey doesn’t even know that they're there until it’s too late. They are very quiet and agile animals, with a lot of stealth and cunning.
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Diet. The Shingar will eat nearly anything with edible meat. They will feed on deer, birds, and even turtles. The Shingars’ strong jaw and sharp teeth allow them to pierce through the shell of turtles. They will also eat fish and crabs they find in small lakes and such. These agile creatures have been known to even climb trees to get their prey. In rare cases they have also attacked people.
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Mating. Female Shingars go into heat during autumn. At this time the Shingars in general appear more often and thus are often killed by hunters at a more rapid rate. When a male finds a female, she may or may not accept him. Females usually prefer large, strong males with dark rosettes and spots. If she does not approve of the male Shingar she will be aggressive toward him and not allow him to mate with her. In most cases the male will retreat to try to find a more acceptant female, but in a few occurrences the male will also become aggressive and force the female to mate with him (if, of course, he can).

During early summer the female will give birth to a litter of anywhere from one to four kittens. In litters larger than 4, the mother Shingar will abandon one or more based on health and size. Very rarely will she abandon the whole litter. However, it isn’t physically possible for a mother Shingar to produce enough milk to support more than 4 kittens. The first few weeks after birth are some of the most vulnerable for the kittens. Too small to move as quickly or as well as their mother, they often have to be transported from one place to another one by one with her help. They aren’t as able to defend themselves while their mother is out hunting. However, after a year to a year and a half the young Shingars are large and strong enough to go out on their own.
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Myth/Lore. Due to the shadowy nature of these great beasts, many stories and legends surround it, varying greatly. Some say that the Shingar brings with it death or that it appears when death is near. Some elves say that it is a creature close to Avá for while it is truly beautiful it cannot deny the ferocity and hideousness lying within itself. Superstition leads some to believe that eating different parts of this animal will give one different strengths belonging to the Shingar. For example, eating its eye may cause improved sigh.

We'd also like to mention a small poem here by Rayne Avalotus describing the way of the Shingar:

"In the darkness of the night
A shadow's creeping out of sight.
It stalks in strong and silent might.

The onyx cat leaps through the air
And moonlight grazes its black hair;
Into prey's flesh its canines tear."
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Origins. Bones and fossils similar to the Shingars have been found near the Ancythrian Sea, and thus it is believed that this was the region from where the originated before moving south. Return to the top

Usages. Shingars are by no means trainable. All attempts to capture and tame this animal have been in vain, and no successful mating has been done while captive. Shingars are extremely aggressive in captivity and very dangerous. With claws capable of piercing through flesh and tearing muscle from bone, teeth able to easily break a neck, as well as its massive size makes the Shingar a force to be reckoned with. However, because of its ferocity, hunters consider slaying one of these beats to be a great feat, and some consider killing it part of a coronation into manhood. Their coat is prized and exceedingly expensive, too. Return to the top

Information provided by Rayne Avalotus View Profile