Humans first discovered the Valukela on exploration trips into the mountains. These mountain-dwelling creatures reminded them of tales they have heard of dragons. As a result, they set out to hunt them. A particularly territorial creature, Valukela were a formidable opponent; their ability to fly coupled with intermediate bursts of fire took down many of the humans that challenged them. Victorious humans used their hides to create cloaks to showcase their dominance over the animal and overtime, it became common for their unusual scales to show up in clothing design. The methodological extermination of the Valukela is often believed to have started the wars between the humans and the Kuvonee Riders. Although the two groups often had tense encounters over matters of land usage, it was only when the Kuvonee discovered humans killing the Valukela that things turned violent. There is debate on the sentience of the Valukela. Most humans in the mountainous regions exhort that the Valukela are incapable of higher levels of thought and should be treated as dangerous beasts. However, each Kuvonee Rider forms a lifelong bond with Valukela during a yearly coming of age ritual. They maintain that the Valukela are highly sentient beings -- not merely an animal they have domesticated for hunt -- and that they are able to communicate with them through their heightened empathetic senses. For all Kuvonee, but particularly Riders, killing one is akin to murder and senselessly killing many is amount to attempted genocide.
Valukela are remanisent to mythologies of dragons. Like dragons, they have large wings that allow them to fly and can occasionally breath fire -- although they typically only do this when they feel threatened. They can grow up to the size of an elephant with a wing span triple their body side. However, they are much lighter than they appear because of their hollow bones. This, couple with a secondary air sacs which stores helium allows them to take flight. They are quadrupedal, but typically walk on their hind legs; this is because their forelegs are attached to their wings. Valukela have chainmail like bones under light-weight scales, which provide a natural defense. Additionally, their long neck allows them to turn almost 360 degrees to sense danger behind them. Their snout is long with both pointed and flat teeth. The flat teeth are thought to be used primarily for grinding rock. Typically, they come in shades of grey and brown, in order to better shield themselves from prey. However, there are blue and green-colored Valukela as well. Blue and green-colored Valukela typically live closer to the coast and feed primarily from oceanic fish.
Dietary Needs and Habits
Vaukela are carnivores. They typically gain nutrition through fish and small mountainous animals such as goats. They can go up to a month without food if they stay stationary; however, they typically eat a few times a week.
Although many Kuvonee live in the wild, young Riders make a yearly pilgrimage to the mountains in order to find one to bond with; this is an important aspect of their coming-of-age ritual. Many Kuvonee don't live long after their Rider dies.
Uses, Products & Exploitation
Their hide has been exploited by humans for clothing and decoration. Their meat is also considered a delicacy among humans.
Geographic Origin and Distribution
In mountainous areas and costal regions
Highly intelligent creatures
There are tales of Valukela living over 300 years, but most domesticated Valuekela die shortly after their Rider -- typically after 150 - 200 years
10-14 feet with an added 2 feet of neck
500 - 800 pounds
Wingspan of over 30 feet