|Average Size:||11-16' tall to shoulder|
|Average Weight:||10-12 tons|
|Coloring:||Tan to chocolate brown|
|Distinguishing Features:||Size, tusks, woolly coat, aggressive|
The mammoth is not difficult to train if captured young, and a number of different cultures use them as mounts, including the Saku Irniqui of Panguro. In battle, not only is the mammoth physically imposing and possessing of a thick hide, but can attack predators with its tusks and its heavy front legs. Mammoths do however, have an unfortunate fear of fire.
This relative of the elephant is covered with thick, woolly hair that is retained year around. A layer of snow can even cover a mammoth thanks to this insulation retaining the animal's warmth so efficiently. The dense coat not only keeps the mammoth warm even in the most harsh of conditions but also provides a natural defense by absorbing blows. Short claws and teeth of smaller predators can't make it to the skin.
The tallest stand at nearly 16 feet tall at the shoulder and weigh tons and is one of the largest natural animals known to man, elf or dwarf. Bulls are considerably larger than females with calves being slow growers, starting out at 3 feet high.
Both males and females have tusks and the first set begins growing roughly 1 year into their life and will get to a size of nearly 2 feet in length. These remain for a total of 4 years until the mammoth has reached young adulthood. The roots dissolve over a period of weeks and both tusks fall within days of each other. A few months later and the permanent set begins to grow in at the rate of 2-4 inches per year. An adult mammoth can be expected to have tusks between 10 and 15 feet in length.
Mammoths are fairly aggressive and will attack with little provocation, especially if the cows of the herd have calves. Between their size and physical attributes they're more than well-equipped to deal with almost any threat. Their only natural predators are man.
Two different breeds are apparent to the learned observer of menageries and foreign artwork.
- The Irniqui mammoth is somewhat smaller and much more thickly haired. Its ears are smaller but its tusks are larger. In addition, it rarely travels in a herd, preferring to live with a mated cow and whatever calves in the barren subarctic plains of Panguro.
- The Ambe mammoth of Mwayambi is larger and less woolly, surviving in more arid conditions. Its smaller tusks are not as necessary for foraging under snow, and its larger ears speak of more natural predators. It travels in large herds of a dozen or so adult beasts, with one alpha male and a scattering of calves. The Ambe mammoth is very seldom trained, and is considered much more aggressive and violent.
Woolly mammoths are native to the frigid plains of Panguro and have not been sighted anywhere else. Their natural adaptations for living in a freezing environment keep them from wandering.
There is no set time where females go in or out of estrus. There is one bull mammoth to each pack and he retains his dominance year around. As long as no other male steps up to try and usurp him there is little violence around mating period. Once a female is receptive he spends a period of 1 to 3 weeks courting her and have even been known to break off from the main herd for short lengths of time.
Gestation lasts 24 months and a mother can expect a single calf. Very seldom do they have more than one. If there are two the weakest can be expected to perish. Growth is slow with calves staying within trunk's reach of their mother at all times for the first 5 years of their life. Only after they shed their 'baby' tusks and grow the nubs of their final pair do they begin wandering away from the herd. Males are typically chased off by the bull male to claim start their own group or take control of another.
The Saku Irniq have harnessed the native woolly mammoths as labor beasts and mounts. Warfare is a combination of mammoth 'tank' cavalry, with support squads of light infantry.