Pigs are a genus of even-toed ungulates including the domestic pig and the wild boar. Pigs are omnivores, and despite their reputation for gluttony, they are generally social and very intelligent animals.
Pigs are one of the most common farm animals in Vaxia, alongside cows, chickens, sheep, and horses. Pigs are kept for their delicious meat, providing various forms of bacon, ham, and pork.
Wild boar are closely related to the domestic pig (an animal with which it freely hybridises). Wild boar are more muscular than domestic pig, characterised by huge tusks and dense, bristly fur. The hunting of wild boar is a popular (and dangerous) activity among Vaxian nobility.
Although "boar" refers to the adult male of many species of hog, including the domestic pig, "wild boar" is used to refer to the whole species, including wild boar sows and wild boar piglets.
Elephants are a fairly broad category of creatures which can be found on all three major continents in the Vaxian world. They are some of the world's largest quadrupeds, easily distinguishable by their large, flappy ears, sharp tusks, and long, prehensile noses. All elephant species are relatively easy to tame, and are used for work and war by many peoples.
The forests, deserts, and plains of south-eastern Candenord are home to these elephants. They are a dull gray in colour, and can grow up to 12 feet tall at the shoulder and 24 feet in length. They have the largest ears of any elephant, and both males and females have tusks.
The elephants of south-western Shi Inkahan are slightly smaller than their eastern relatives (up to 9 feet in height) and redder in colour. They also have more of a hump on their backs and a noticeable dent in the top of their heads. Female Shinkan elephants lack tusks.
Mammoths, found in the far northern tundras of the Vaxian Continent are the largest species of elephant, growing up to 16 feet tall at the shoulder. This species is distinguished by its thick coat of shaggy brown fur and its excessively enormous tusks, which grow up to 16 feet long and are much more curved than those of other elephants.
Feline is the general term for a variety of cats and cat-like species. They are generally furry, solitary, and adorable, with sharp hearing and good eyesight. It turns out that nearly all species of cat are capable of producing a soothing rumble called a "purr".
Domestic cats are often seen around houses, farms, bars, and ships. Anywhere there are people, you are likely to find cats. These creatures generally feed on small rodents that are generally detrimental to human livelihood, and moreover many humans find it comforting to pet a cat. For these reasons, housecats have entered into a symbiotic relationship with many civilized races, though anyone who knows cats might say it's a stretch to call them 'domesticated'.
There are many species of big cat. The species found on the Vaxian continent include a number of varieties of leopards (including snow leopards), panthers, bobcats, and lynx.
Lions are large, tawny yellowish carnivores native to the continent of Candenord. They are among the only species of feline that are social, hunting in groups called prides. Male lions have been known to grow large, luxuriant manes.
Tigers are slightly smaller than lions, and generally found on the continent of Shi Inkahan. Their most notable feature is their striking orange and black stripy pattern.
Sabretooth cats can be found in the far north of the Vaxian continent. Their most noticeable feature are their protruding maxillary canine teeth, which can grow up to 17 centimeters (7 inches) long and are used for stabbing more than slashing. Sabretooth cats are larger but more compactly built, with shorter and more massive limbs than other felines, and generally have a thick coat of fur.
Penguins are small, flightless, water-dwelling birds which live in polar climates, such as the Northlands of the Vaxian continent. They comprise a great many species, but are usually black and white in color and subsist on fish. The largest species can be up to three feet tall.
Rodents are a classification of small, furry animals whose teeth grow through their whole lives and who are generally considered pests to humans.
Mice are small, cute, timid rodents that like to eat grains but are otherwise harmless to humans.
Rats are largish rodents that often live in sewers and are frequent carriers of plague. They are recognizable by their bare tails and malevolent demeanor.
Turtles are any of a number of species of usually water-dwelling reptile that is covered in a hard, bony shell.
Tortoises are large, land-dwelling animals, basically the same as turtles, but with feet instead of flippers.
Wolves are any of a number of species of large, furry, forest-dwelling animals, related to dogs, which usually hunt in packs to take down prey much larger than themselves.
Sheep are quadrupedal, plant eating mammals. They can be kept as live stock and have their wool harvested to create clothing and other items. Their meat is also used as a food source.
Primates are a group of animals which includes lemurs, tarsiers, monkeys, apes, and most humanoids. They tend to be considered one of the most intelligent groups of animals, and are often highly social as well.
Lemurs and Tarsiers
Lemurs are found in the jungles of some of the islands southeast of Shi Inkahan, and are distinguished by their long tails, used for balance, and their large, reflective eyes. Tarsiers are found in the same regions, and have much smaller bodies with proportionally enormous eyes, as well as thinner, rat-like tails.
Monkeys are the most common of primates found on all three known continents, in many environments, though they thrive in forests and jungles. Monkeys frequently have prehensile tails, and are sometimes kept as pets, stereotypically by East Kadrass Pirates
An ape is, most simply, any primate which lacks a tail. This includes gorillas and chimpanzees, both native to southern Candenord. Vaxia's most famous gorilla, Ben Branlyn (given enhanced intelligence by the Royal Labs and put in charge of Victory City), is an ape, although people frequently refer to him as "The Monkey" anyway.
Most humanoids, including humans, Elves dwarven races, orcish races, and beast people, are likely descended from one ancestral race, closely related to apes, altered and split into many through various instances of magical experimentation and divine intervention as well as continued natural evolution.
Horses are large odd-toed ungulate mammals, used for millennium as one of the most economically important domesticated animals, especially relied upon for farm work and for transportation.
Most horses perform work such as carrying humanoids or are harnessed to pull objects such as carts or plows. Hundreds of distinct horse breeds have been developed, allowing horses to be specialized for certain tasks; lighter horses for racing or riding, heavier horses for farming and other tasks requiring pulling power. In some societies, horses are a source of food, both meat and milk; in others it is taboo to consume these products.
Horses are used often in war, especially in Nebrak, famed for its knights.
Cetaceans are an order of carnivorous marine mammals more commonly known as whales. They breathe air, for which they must surface periodically. Baleen whales consume microfauna called krill, while predatory whales, dolphins, and porpoises eat fish and squid.
Bovines are a group of quadruped creatures that are distinguished by their cloven hooves, true horns, and herding instincts, and are often used for food.
Aurochs are large, shaggy animals found in the northern regions of the Vaxian continent.
Bison are large, semi-shaggy animals with small horns that are found in Candenord and Vaxia.
Cows are widespread and can be found on all three continents. They are domesticated in most places, except where religion or culture prohibits it. They are some of the most versatile domesticated animals: their meat is consumed as food, their milk is consumed fresh or turned into various dairy products, their skin is used for leather, and when all else fails, they are used as draft animals to pull carts and plows. Bulls have horns, cows do not.
Yaks are medium-large, very shaggy creatures which live in the mountains of Shi Inkahan.
Lizards are a very large group of reptile creatures. They are distinguished by cold-bloodedness, scales, and a basic tetrapod body form.
Small lizards comprise hundreds of species that can be found all over the world. These include chameleons, iguanas, collared lizards, and monitor lizards, among others.
Giant lizards, including what we might call a komodo dragon, as well as even larger species - are found mostly in caves, cultivated as a source of food and leather for clothing by the Nethar