Parrican Species in Excilior | World Anvil


Following the herd

arricans are massive, herbivorous, mammalian pack-animals that roam the forests of northern- and central-Isleprimoton. Although they are passive beasts, they have a reputation for causing great mayhem amongst casterway populations due to their skittish nature and their propensity to break into panicked stampedes with minimal provocation.

Basic Information


lthough they conform to a mammalian phenotype, their hair is difficult to discern unless the observer is in very close proximity. Parricans are notable for their grey hides, their long swooping necks, their drooping eyes and ears, and their sheer size. The average specimen is nearly three times taller than a human and can weigh in excess of 13 metric tons. They travel in massive herds, roaming across the great forest floors of Isleprimoton and devouring every scrap of vegetation in their path. While they are generally non-aggressive and do nothing to attack passersby, the sight of a parrican herd leaves many humans in a state of unease. Watching them lumber through the forest, at scales that could easily crush humans, leads many people to give them a wide berth and treat them with great caution.

Biological Traits

I'm pretty certain that "parrican heaven" consists of an endless expanse of structures and screaming people - all of which can be eternally trampled.
Nikhil Sobjian, Namgongian merchant, 2575 AoR
arrican herds can be as small as 20 or as large as 500. The herd slowly snakes its way through forests, devouring all the vegetation it can find. While grazing, parricans repeatedly emit low-level rumbling sounds. These slow-motion growls carry through the forests for many kilometers and some cognoscenti believe that they are actually communicating with members of distant herds.
Their most famous trait is their propensity to break into extended stampedes. Although they are generally docile and make no attempt to attack humans, a herd's trampling can ruin entire villages and many deaths have been recorded of unfortunate victims who found themselves in the path of an oncoming stampede. Once they have been startled, the herd will sprint over long distances. Some stampedes have been known to continue as far as five kilometers. While they are in the midst of such a sprint, they have a tendency to run over and through anything that they believe they can trample - walls, small trees, free-standing buildings. At more than 13 metric tons, there isn't much that a full-grown parrican can't demolish.   Parrican stampedes can be sparked by incredibly trivial occurrences. The pounce of a single predator. Jarring and unexpected noises. Even lightning - a thoroughly common event throughout Excilior - can spark a stampede. The Dawn Reaver famously learned to harness this trait as a natural weapon against Exterminator encampments during the Nomadic Wars.

Genetics and Reproduction

arricans mate yearly during Achiel. They have a short gestational period of roughly 180 days, with births typically occurring during Gagavr. This allows their young to flourish through a long "winter" and spring season before being forced to endure Excilior's brutal summer. Fifty percent of parrican births yield a single calf. Forty percent yield two calves. The remaining ten percent yield three-to-five calves. However, births yielding more than two calves are not considered to be advantageous. A mother caring for only one-or-two calves has a strong chance of fostering them to adulthood. But larger litters frequently end with all of the calves eventually dying due to lack of food or care.

Growth Rate & Stages

ewborns typically weigh 90-140 kilograms. Litters with only a single baby feature the largest calves - and larger calves have a much higher survival rate than their smaller contemporaries. Newborns reach their full, adult sizes in three years. In their first year, they are completely dependent upon their mothers. Their only sustenance is their mother's milk and they cannot survive without her. Second-year calves begin grazing on the forests' vegetation, but they still return to their mothers for occasional milk. Third-year calves reach nearly 80% of their full-grown size and rarely suckle from their mothers.

Ecology and Habitats

arricans make their home in all the major forests of northern- and central-Isleprimoton. They will, on occasion, roam into some of the central grasslands of the Twinight Range, Shred Steppe, Hammerwash, and Aethyr Basin. But they always prefer to be under the protective cover of the canopeias and bloodwoods in Isleprimoton's primordial forests.

Dietary Needs and Habits

heir grinding teeth allow them to pulverize, and eventually digest, nearly any form of vegetation that rests on the forest floors. They prefer the sweet, supple branches of small-to-midsize bushes. But they will also "settle" for nearly any organic matter laying on-or-near the ground. This includes fallen leaves, fresh arbyr branches, grasses, mosses, ferns, and nearly any other greenery. Parricans are sometimes referred to as maidwolds because a roaming herd will literally "clean" the forest floor of nearly all organic matter. Although their foraging appears slow and deliberate, their appetites are voracious. A full-grown parrican can easily consume 600 kilograms of vegetation in a single day.

Additional Information

Social Structure

wenty percent of parricans are female. During mating season, the males battle for rights to the females by battering each other with their blunt skulls, swung at the end of their long, swooping necks like war hammers. These epic matches can last for hours, with the loser being bludgeoned into submission. But the winner is not guaranteed a mating. The females choose their paramours from amongst the contestants who have emerged victorious. However, there is usually some portion of "winning" suitors who will go unchosen and will not have the chance to mate. Once the new calves are born, the males generally serve to protect the herd, but they do little to directly aid in the raising of children.

Uses, Products & Exploitation

Bazyl loosed an arrow today at a parrican. It did not harm the beast in the slightest, but it sufficiently startled the herd to spark a stampede. The stampede, in turn, leveled the new klyster, which has been under construction for the better part of three years. It was universally agreed that Bazyl will never again be allowed to join the hunting party.
Pawla Stanoita, Hetmaan hunter, 2222 AoR
asterways have occasionally turned to the parrican as a food source, but it's rare. Their ruinous stampedes and their famously-skittish nature makes it borderline-irresponsible to attack them. Springing upon a parrican doesn't just carry the distinct likelihood that the creature will not be killed - but it also brings the implied consequence that the action may spark a stampede which may, in turn, wipe out the hunter's entire village. Nevertheless, parricans can be "safely" hunted so long as great care is taken to only spring upon those who have wandered from the herd and are significantly separated. This precaution increases the likelihood that a failed strike will only spark a single raging beast, rather than an entire herd of marauders. But even if the hunt is successful, casterways typically find parrican meat to be distasteful. It's described as "oily" and "gamy". And while a single animal could feed an entire village of casterways for weeks, butchering the giant carcass and transporting the meat - before it raises the attention of other predators - is challenging, to say the least.

Geographic Origin and Distribution

Perception and Sensory Capabilities

arricans are tremendously sensitive to vibrations in the soil. They have specialized bones in their legs that channel and amplify perturbations in the soil and transmit these signals to the brain. This allows the herd to "hear" a great many natural phenomena occurring in or on the ground. This sensory perception makes it extremely difficult for predators to launch a surprise attack on them.

Symbiotic and Parasitic organisms

hile juvenile parricans must be protected from a wide range of predators, there isn't much that can take down a healthy, full-grown adult. Their sheer size gives them an advantage against many would-be hunters. Their hide is tremendously thick (especially on their backs) - so much so that many animals are powerless to pierce it with their teeth or claws. A great range of smaller creatures can be found living around - or even, on - them. Small birds, especially, often nest in the moss that can grow and accumulate over time on their backs.
Scientific Name
Okapoerus gallundus
25 years
Average Height
4.5 meters
Average Weight
13 metric tons
Average Length
12 meters
Body Tint, Colouring and Marking
Infant and juvenile parricans are mostly brown, with some green mottling that lends a degree of camouflage on the forest floors. The mottling eventually fades and their skin transitions to its standard grey by the time that they reach adulthood at three years of age. As they get older, many acquire a top coat of moss that colonizes their backs and tails like a mobile patch of land. This moss is neither helpful nor harmful to the beasts, although the miniature ecosystem that sometimes develops in these moss beds can occasionally cause problems.


Please Login in order to comment!
Powered by World Anvil