"Take a lizard and a rock golem and mash them together, then drop them in a hot and sandy wasteland, and you get the strass. They call themselves 'sandwalkers', but every city we've discovered so far has been located on the edge of the Hypokra Sea, in the tiny stretch of Strassia's only fertile land."The strass are the native sapiants of Isl Strassia. Discovered less than a century ago, they welcomed diplomatic representatives and have made efforts to accomodate visitors to their cities.
Strass have a pebbled exoskeleton that provides natural armor and protection from the fierce heat of their isl. They range in color from nearly white to dark greenish-brown, depending on what area of Strassia they inhabit. They have three clawed digits on their hands, a thumb and two fingers. Their feet likewise have three digits, two large claws in the front, and one smaller claw in the back for balance.
Genetics and Reproduction
Strass breed similarly to fish on other isls. Females go through cycles of fertility. At the peak of their cycle, they produce and lay up to a dozen eggs. The eggs are collected in family nests and fertilized by chosen males, then tended to by the family's egg maids. Not all eggs survive, and females found to continually produce weak eggs are usually given a formula that inhibits egg production.
Growth Rate & Stages
Strass have shorter lives, and grow and mature quickly in comparison to species from other isls, reaching adulthood after only five cycles and sexual maturity at seven. Hatchlings are born zukteel, or "scale-less", and can't survive in the isls ferocious heat. They kept safe in underground chambers where they are care for and fed a diet rich in proteins until their exoskeletons grow in after about half a cycle. After that, they are allowed outside to intergrate with society. Strass are considered adults until thirty cycles old, at which point they transition to elder. Elders are the leaders of families and clans. When they feel their life coming to an end, they leave their homes and venture into the desert so that their bodies can return to the sand.