F#49: Frond

 

Someone emerged from hibernation too early! The deceptively mild weather earlier this week obviously tempted this little frond out from its winter sleep.

They don’t do so well in the snow, however- the usually shy insectivore was surprisingly eager to come inside to harass our spider population.

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F#48: Omen Manifest

Technically, these aren’t creatures- and if you see one, it should be reported immediately for your own safety.

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An omen manifest is a summoned energy, that possesses the ‘body’ made for it by the summoner. The body must be made from a bone and animal hair.

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Summoning an omen is considered a necromantic act, and is illegal.

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F#46: Mewts/Pond Sirens

Starting mid-February and going on into early spring, waterways across the world come alive with the piping calls of the ‘pond siren’ or ‘mewt’, a freshwater fae.

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Stories tell of the mewt confusing travelers in the dark and tricking them into falling in streams and ditches- if you hear a mewt crying, know that you are by a body of water.

Despite their fishy appearance, mewts are in fact mamals, and breathe out of the water- in the late winter you might spot one coming out to bask in the weak sunlight.

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F#44: Rootball

Apologies for the late post! It’s been rather chaotic at the institute this week, what with it being Widowbird breeding season! Also, we have a stall coming up in Gloucester on Feb 3rd and 4th of interesting artifacts and specimens- so if you’re in the area, come and check it out at the ‘What’s Your Game’ larp fair!

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The rootball is found in damp areas perfect for fungus- woodland, rough ground, even some back gardens. Though essentially harmless, make sure your cat/dog/domesticated griffin doesn’t try and eat one- the mushrooms are usually poisonous.

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F#43: Mottled Cohuatl

SFI recieved a call from a house near the Leywood- someone concerned about a tiny nest in their garden. We get a lot of calls like this- people worry that something dangerous is making a home in their backyard.

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But this time, we were pleased to report, that is not the case. This anxious parent showed up to check that we weren’t up to something with their potential offspring!

This is a mottled cohuatl- the smallest member of the winged serpent family.

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Immediately, the cohuatl lured us away from their nest with a performance of fluttering and acrobatics. As the nest was in a safe location, and the neighbours were reassured that the occupants were friendly, we left them to it.

F#42: The Anomaly

It’s hard to tell which of its unusual features is the most arresting- it’s antlers, the gold marking, thick white fur- or it’s third eye.

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Okay, it’s probably the eye.

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As it’s name would suggest, the Anomaly is little studied and remains a mystery to the parazoology community. They have never been captured, disappearing like smoke once contained- one popular theory is an ability to move between dimensions at will.

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While most assume it is fae in origin, other dare ask- perhaps the anomaly is neither from earthside, or the otherworld. Perhaps there are places beyond our knowledge even yet.

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But for now, we can all agree- ‘Anomaly’ is a fitting name indeed.

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F#41: Sprigs

(Adopt a sprig from our etsy shop! Six available.)

It’s been a busy week at the SFI- festive preparations, major storms and power cuts abound! The greenhouse heater has given up, so some of the more sensitive occupants have come inside.

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Meet the sprigs; a faeries species also known as wandering roses or meadowmaids.

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During the summer months they are often found in the company of bees and other pollinators- so much so that at one time they were thought to be farming the insects.

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In a way, they are- flocks of sprigs will wander towards bee hives for a taste of honey; and, naturally, the bees are drawn to their flowers.

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During the winter, however, cold conditions threaten the survival of these fae creatures.

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And so, we have guests for the festive season, and tiny footprints everywhere. Good luck keeping them out of the chocolate.

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