Calopus- The Sawhorns

A calopus standing atop the stump of a tree it felled.

World: Midgard

Diet: Meat, some fruit

Height: 3 feet at the shoulder

Lifespan: 7 years

Habitat: Forests and meadows

Activity Cycle: Nocturnal

Calopus are fearsome predators, famed for their ability to devastate forests. The saw-like horns of a calopus are capable of swiftly grinding through wood, toppling thin trees in a single strike and thicker ones over the course of a few minutes. Woodsmen often tame these creatures, and they are as beloved of lumberjacks as they are loathed by ranchers. Calopus do sometimes fell trees with prey in them, but most often, they have other things in mind. By felling trees, they create a place where their spiny bodies more easily maneuver. More importantly, they work in groups to create walls that they use when hunting their prey.

Calopus hunt and live mostly as pack units. A breeding pair runs the pack with a few of their juvenile children. Small prey is hunted alone, but when facing larger prey or prey in significant groups, calopus will use pack tactics to chase prey into spaces bordered by walls they have created by stacking trees, trapping them. When in direct combat, calopus mostly attack with their horns, only using their fangs for finishing blows and eating afterwards. Their spines protect them from the attacks of larger predators, although they come with a drawback.

A heraldic calopus rampant. Not a particularly accurate depiction of the creature.

In fables, calopus are associated with destruction and often, buffoonish antics. This stereotyping of calopus comes from tales of the animals being caught in undergrowth, their spines and horns becoming entangled. This does happen with some frequency when calopus are first entering an area they have yet to clear out, and hunters will often use this to hunt calopus, setting up brushy areas where they must slow down. Is is noted to be hilarious when find themselves stuck in a bush, although significantly less funny when they break free and are very angry about their humiliation.

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