Nossawrasse

Pronunciation: /'nɑːsɑːræs/

Kingdom: Monster/Plant symbiosis          Taxon: Audax

Height: 2 m      Weight: 2150 kg        

Wild Habitat: Berengeti

Phenotypic Notation: EGL/GRW/KRT-MET/BLY-MUY-ORY-VEG-VRT/RNO 

  Adult Stage

Summary

Visitors to Berengeti quickly notice the Nossawrasse dotting its plains, even from a distance; this monster's massive size and bright colours, which stand in stark contrast to the region's yellow Floss, aren't even the biggest alerts to this sedentary herbivore's presence. Nossawrasse also puff out great clouds of magenta pollen from their nostrils, sometimes frequently enough to create lasting columns of colour, metres high, above the beasts on windless days. This pollen, though called Nossawrasse pollen, is not from the reproductive system of the Nossawrasse (which reproduces asexually by laying eggs) but from that of a microscopic plant found exclusively in symbiosis with Nossawrasse and so thoroughly integrated with Nossawrasse biology that it becomes part of a newborn Nossawrasse while the monster's body is still in development. Without the plant's influence, the hide and horn of a Nossawrasse would be completely yellow; the flamboyant colours caused by the plant's presence in Nossawrasse's skin fight this original camoflauge, turning the Nossawrasse into a beacon that attracts everything from predators to the small flying monsters which like to use the Nossawrasse's stiff moustache to clean themselves. These visitors inevitably collect pollen, which they will carry to the next Nossawrasse they visit, facilitating the plant's reproduction. In return, the plant produces structures that reinforce a Nossawrasse's epidermis with powerful near-impenetrability, protecting the slow-moving monster from most would-be predators. The yellow spines on a Nossawrasse's scarred back are all that remain of its distant past as something stealthier.