|Official Name||Ceardian Bobcat|
|Habitat||Essalonia, Oldt Era|
The Ceardian Bobcat is a medium-sized wild cat native to Oldt Era, though the feline has since spread to Essalonia following the Destruction of Old Ceardia. Its name comes from its short tail.The Bobcat dwells in forests, often keeping away from sentient races unless the lure of an unattended Common Farm Chicken or two is too much for a starving individual.
The Ceardian Bobcat grew up alongside the Ceardian Ailor of Oldt Era, sharing the forest with the other major predator of the region, the Ceardian Silver Wolf. Tales of fierce forest dwelling cats predate the Cataclysm by a number of years, and undoubtedly the Elven Empire and Sariyd Empire seized populations of the animal for their menageries. However, the only confirmable evidence of the Bobcat begins after the Cataclysm when they were recorded with greater frequency as the native Ailor escaped Elven oppression and those Ailor from outside the region reached Oldt Era. As they proved untamable, the animal was spared intense scrutiny, continuing to subsistin the forests. Unfortunately, this relatively peaceful life was shattered by the Destruction of Old Ceardia. As the Tendrils rose up from the earth and tore apart the land, some wild Bobcats were saved and brought to Essalonia by fleeing Ceardian refugees. In the near 40 years since this event, the Bobcat has rapidly spread across that continent, reaching far into the east of the region and the south with its more arid climate. The animal also still survives in Oldt Era on the sparse forests of the island-state of Yervonth and in a limited capacity on Zemlith though that population is dwindling. In a dark reflection of their past, those from the Regalian Empire’s effort to reclaim Old Ceardia have mentioned sightings of fierce forest cats, who watch with their yellow eyes glinting in the darkness. While such reports are just rumors, only time will tell if the Ceardian Bobcat survives in its homeland as well as it has elsewhere.
The Ceardian Bobcat is a medium-sized cat when compared with other similar wild felines. The Bobcat stands at the height of one to two feet and a length of two to three feet, weighing in around 50 pounds depending on the season. The head of the Bobcat features short whiskers below a pink nose and yellow hooded eyes above that. Their mouth shows no teeth on the exterior, but strong upper and lower incisors to carry out their carnivorous diet. The animal also has two small scruffs of fur at the base of their head pointing off to the sides, similar to the Tsarr Cat of Etosil though far shorter in length. Their ears are of a reasonable size for a feline, pointing up off of the head and have a low level of mobility when it is needed. They possess a thick neck, which attaches the head to the body. The rest of this body is well built for power with four sturdy legs each with a robust and padded paw, allowing them to survive in a variety of forest subclimates. The body then ends in a stub tail and is covered with a coat of tan or light brown fur spotted with black and dark brown spots along their bodies. These highlights are also present on the face but just barely, lightly marking the areas around their eyes and mouths.
The Ceardian Bobcat has an equal gender ratio, and the patterning on their bodies is unique to each feline. There are also some reports that the Ceardian Bobcats found in southern Essalonia have developed lighter fur tones but others contend that this is just dust and dirt from the desert.
Life Span and Development
Ceardian Bobcats, like many felines, are born live as a litter of kittens numbering one to four. Fathers do not stick around after two months, by which time the kittens have been weaned off their mother’s milk, and she must begin to show them how to hunt. Another six months will have the Bobcat kittens grow larger, learning more from their mother and developing through their adolescence period. Within the last four months of their first year of life, they begin to drift away from their mother, hunting on their own and eventually leaving to make their own lives in the wilderness. When the mating season begins (with Bobcats able to procreate after the age of two), males will often mate with more than one female before returning to their territory. Females stay in their own territories and ultimately raise their children as their mothers did. The average lifespan of the Ceardian Bobcat is nine years, with a maximum of twelve.
Ceardian Bobcats are powerful, defensive creatures. Predators native to forests, they hunt smaller mammals, birds and sometimes larger prey should the need arise. With each other, the animal is often cordial but still defensive of their territory or, if a mother, of her children. Males interacting with one another usually end in a fight while females often bat once or twice to firmly warn off those who overstay their welcome. When encountering sentient races, Ceardian Bobcats are often skittish, avoiding contact or simply passively watching on. Some do grow more accustomed to the various races if they live near a more urban environment but such cats are rare due to the low population densities of many settlements around them.
Territory and Groupings
Ceardian Bobcats live alone in small caves or nestled spaces in forests. Their dens are often made for just them, but when mating season begins, females will attempt to enlarge their homes just in case of the arrival of kittens. Additionally, Bobcats often have swathes of territory. While not overtly against other Bobcats entering their land, with sections of territory often overlapping between males and females, a Bobcat who directly approaches a den is often regarded with first a wary, and then angry eye before the outright conflict begins.
- Ceardian Bobcats hate the snow but curiously possess the resolve and ability to swim when needed.
- Ceardian Bobcat kittens greatly enjoy heights, seeking to climb their dens, their mothers and trees to get up as high as they can. This is often harmless but may bring the attention of a hungry Ceardian Long Talon.