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#47: Unidentified (Keeley wants to call it Flufferus Pufferus, please don’t let that happen.)

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Keeley found this in the woods just outside of Revery (whilst she was on a routine trip to tag some migratory nightshade plants) and…well, we have no idea what it is.

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If it’s a newly discovered entity, that would unfortunately mean she gets to name it- and she’s planning to go with ‘Flufferous Pufferous’, which is a terrible idea and must be stopped.

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So I, Jesper Beattie, beseech you: do you recognise this creature? It seems to be young, and unable to fly much yet- we’re searching for a nest it might have fallen from.

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(Whippet pictured for size)

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#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#40: Fernling

 

This weeks creature can be found in our shop!

A walk to the woods in the mud and rain might not be your idea of a perfect trip- but it’s necessary if you want to find one of these little specimens!

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The fernling: a creature that loves damp weather, and only likes to stretch its roots with a walk when there’s plenty of moisture about.

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This particular specimen wasn’t thrilled to be put in a jar- but due to their reclusiveness and expertise in hiding themselves away; the fernling is one of our least studied native woodland species.

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So, like it or not, he’ll be spending a couple of weeks in the SFI greenhouse, before I release him back to this spot.

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(This week’s creature report was written by Keeley Claremont, SFI botanist)

Intermission: Concept vs Creature

Today was the last day of my market stall! Thursdays comic will be posted as normal, and my etsy will also reopen the same day. Because of the market I don’t have a new creature for you- but I do have some comparisons of my concept sketches I draw before I start making them, and the eventual creature you see on the site. I hope this is interesting! 

One of my earliest creatures, sprout was little more than a scribble. I think he turned out cuter?

When is a hippogriff not a hippogriff? When it’s pretty much another creature entirely!
I stayed pretty close to the sketch here, but couldn’t get the face the same.
Hekbune: probably the closest to a sketch I have ever made. I drew him several times before attempting the model, so perhaps that’s why!

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