|Official Name||Crowned Eflaln|
|Common Nicknames||Altalar Clocks, Clock Birds, Meal Birds|
Simple yet graceful, the Crowned Eflaln, also known to the Altalar as Wïnearen-Dulsi, is a small, gold-hooded songbird most famous for its natural ability of time-keeping. Not truly domesticated, the songbird acts as a living time-piece throughout the countryside and gardens of Daen, having a unique song for various hours of the day and is thus utilized more passively, being allowed to nest anywhere from farms to urban sprawls. Even when transported out of Daen, these songbirds retain their time-keeping affinity after a minor time to adjust to the new geography and are sought after more as living trinkets than animal companions.
As common as the Altalar are within Daen, so too are the Crowned Eflaln, displaying the same ancestral longevity and tenacity. Scholarly records first started appearing due to their innate and fascinating affinity at the height of the Allorn Empire, during The Awakening era of Altalar history some 2,800 years before the Cataclysm. Never truly domesticated, the Altalar were more than content to simply let the songbird’s population remain undisturbed and unregulated, and preferred that the many gardens and cities have an abundance as to pleasantly enact their role as natural clocks. The Crowned Eflaln’s population was influenced by the Altalar it coexisted with; a poetic symbiosis was shared between the two when surviving the various conflicts and natural disasters that shaped the continent of Daen. Even after the Cataclysm, the Crowned Eflaln has a modest but applauded role within the continent of Daen and in the presence of Teled Methen, henceforth protected from any motion to cull or tame the species as it had a rather untouched, niche to fill. After the various slave-exoduses that occurred after the Cataclysm, many Crowned Eflaln were brought across the oceans to fulfill the role they had done for thousands of years, though numbers have yet to rise with any significance outside of Daen. Today, the Crowned Eflaln is still common, from the western Void-invaded Sundial Lands, to the northernmost Ithanian shores, and are a general and tolerable benefit to anyone between.
The Crowned Eflaln is a small-scaled songbird with modest proportions; a wingspan of around seven inches and length of only a few inches less, three to four. It’s weight is so slight that it is barely of any significance to measure, at less than a pound, and has a small, triangular beak with beady eyes like a dark berry on the side of its head. The Crowned Eflaln has pristine, ivory feathers from neck to tail, adeptly blended with the white Tanaar towers to which it may nest, as well as within the woodland groves and farmland it settles, with deviation only atop the small head of the songbird: a bright yellow crown of feathers that spike up fractionally- hence the descriptive name. No matter the geography or climate, the songbird’s entire plumage remains the same and has likely been so since the first academic studies.
There is only one sole difference between the two genders which has proven a matter of interest to scholars and bird-watchers alike, and that is the fact the female of the species has a larger and more vibrant crown and was once improperly recorded during the waning years of its discovery, when the gender was mismatched. The population is fairly equal, with a ratio of 1:1, though in times of greater population stresses, females are more likely to be found than males.
Lifespan and Development
The cycle of the Crowned Eflaln begins within a small round nest and a clutch of nut-sized eggs ranging between six to twelve in total, one egg laid a day by the mother and weighs about a tenth of her own size. The eggs are incubated for around two weeks. When hatched, the chicks are utterly defenseless, with absolutely no protection whatsoever and, if located by a predator larger than the coupled breeding pair, they will be abandoned entirely. At around a month in total, after they hatch, the chicks become ready to fledge, obliged by their coupled parents to take flight for the first time, and are fed for only about a week after this monumental moment. Once fully matured at around four to five months depending on the food availability, the Crowned Eflaln is ready to join larger flocks to find a mate of their own to prepare the next generational cycle at around a year after they hatched themselves. The Crowned Eflaln live an average life of around ten years in total, though when in those rare times of being maintained, can live up to around thirty years at most.
The Crowned Eflaln songbirds are of no true worth due to their common populations, save the single defining factor of their Altalar correlations and their time-keeping utility. They have a unique song equally divided in the day:the Fïlnaa, A’ëni, and Líntis chimes, or simply the Dawn, Midday, and Dusk songs. Naturally, as the year progresses, the hourly difference between these songs differ and also acts as, not only daily clocks,seasonal calendars in other parts of Aloria when the distance between the songs is measured. The Crowned Eflaln mate for life and, if one of the breeding pair dies, the other- even in times of populated stress -will not seek another mate. In a more domesticated setting, that being caged, the Crowned Eflaln will retain the precise natural behaviors without falter for several years but can easily become depressed and even die especially if alone and unstimulated. They will never come back to their owner if released.
Territorial and Groupings
A highly social songbird, the Crowned Eflaln survives in a large flock that moves like fluid in the sky, combatting any predatory avian through confusing motions and an apparent larger form. Flocks range in the extreme, from a dozen to hundreds, and are a beautiful, almost artistic sight no matter how common these communal displays are. Within Daen, they do not stray far from their place of origin, only migrating if food becomes scarce or to avoid large numbers of predators or disasters. Despite the flock size, nesting is usually done separately, anywhere from the branches of trees, in large bushes, or in the various sized towers and roofs that dot the cities throughout the continent of Daen and elsewhere. Even if they mate for life, any forced utilization of the bird is recommended to be in the half-dozen mark with a designated and closed-off area for them to seemingly roam freely. Thus, properly maintaining such songbirds becomes no more than an invested hobby or glorified expense.
- The Altalar view the Crowned Eflaln as a direct correlation of their presence, even used for academic purposes, for wherever the Altalar seem to be, so do the Crowned Eflaln, with a population history that has risen and fallen alongside their own for thousands of years.
- Due to the similarities between the Crowned Eflaln and the Altalar and their historical usage, they are often referred to as ‘Altalar Clocks’ by the present Ailor.