LARGE REPTILES

A Common Sight

Large reptiles are present all across the world of Zethan and come in many shapes and sizes. A few of them have been domesticated by the people of the world, some have been hunted to near extinction, and there are those that are simply to be feared. A herd of them roaming the plains is just as common sight as seeing them plodding through fields as beasts of burden.  

A varied Species

There are a huge variety of large reptiles within Zethan. They are commonly divided into three broad sub groups, though there are many different species within each group.  

Quadrupedal

These reptiles walk upon four legs, and are predominantly herbivores. They range in size from 2m to 6m at the shoulder, with some reaching head heights of up to 10m. The largest species are rare and are only found in areas of vast vegetation, where there are few humans to compete with. The recent drop in human population has seen a slight increase in their numbers.  
They can be found all across Zethan, though they are rare within the desert and mountains due to a lack of vegetation. Those which inhabit the grasslands and savannas tend to live in large migratory herds of several hundred members. Within the jungles and forests smaller groups of up to thirty are much more common.
     

Bipedal

These reptiles walk upon their rear legs, and often have much smaller forearms, though this is not always the case. They range in height from 2m to 5m tall, though there have been claims of 7m tall terrors in the eastern jungles. They have a much more varied diet than their four legged relatives, with many of them being carnivores or omnivores.  
Most of the herbivore, and omnivore species live in herds, varying in size depending on climate and region. Carnivores live in much smaller family groups, the larger species often being lone predators, and tend to be more territorial. They can be found all across the planet, and some of the more agressive species have been becoming more of a problem for some human settlements.
   

Flying

There are far fewer species of large flying reptile than there are of their landbound cousins, though highly diverse never-the-less. Only two of the documented species are herbivores, the rest are all omnivores. They are the most common type of large reptile to be found in the mountains, and while they will hunt across the plains, they tend to roost in high elevations and forested regions.  
All flying reptiles have a pair of rear legs and one or more pairs of wings. Some have no forearms, and some have them combined with their wings, with both leathery and feathered wings being represented. They live in a variety of family groups, from large flocks, to mating pairs, to lone wanderers.
Beasts of Burden
Large reptiles are put to a variety tasks by the peoples of Zethan. They are used to pull carts and carriages, to carry riders, to haul supplies and to work the land. Which species are used to carry out these tasks depends on the region, but every nation of Zethan puts these large creatures to use in some fashion.
Tell you what I made my fortune in. Lizard poop! That's right! Do you have any idea how much poop is produced by those creatures? The desert kingdoms buy it like nobody's business. They'll pay even more if it's pre-processed into top quality fertiliser
— Businessman from Gran Riomar

Sport
Reptile racing is a popular sport across Zethan, and good jockeys and trainers are well respected in many nations. Breeding racing reptiles has always been a profitable business, and owning one or more thoroughbred racers is a sign of wealth in most countries. It is a sport which spans all levels of society, and encompasses many cultures.

Livestock
There are some species of large reptiles which are farmed for their meat and skins. The smaller breeds used for this purpose can be kept in specially built enclosures, but the larger breeds are usually kept in carefully tended herds on the grasslands and savannas. Claws, teeth and bones are also put to many uses by the various cultures of the world including; tools, decorations, musical instruments and jewelry.

Comments

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11 Dec, 2021 20:23

Dinosaurs! Who doesn't love dinosaurs! I especially love the poop quote, and the whole premise about what would happen if some civilization existed at the same time as dinosaurs.