Lutryne

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The Lutryne (Lutra sapiens or Vidrus vidrus) are a group of bipedal mammals with many recognizable superficial otter-like features and characteristics. Larger than their more primitive counterparts, lutrynes in general have similar fur markings, with brown, black, and white patterns being the most prominent. Their bodies consist of a larger brain capable of more precise and faster execution, when compared to their quadripedal counterpart. The lutryne body is considered rather thin and sleek, a result of their aquatic-based ancestry. Many lutrynes inhabit the nation of Lapimuhyo and exist as a minority in other Gondwanan nations, including neighboring Rijelv and Ivlya. The race is regarded as generally fast and agile in aquatic environments, with their species typically maintaining a relatively thin layer of fat and a very dense layer of fur. Outside of the water, the lutryne body underperforms, yet still retains its ability to stand upright, walk, and run, among other things. Maintaining an average height of around 5 feet, and weighing in around 120 pounds, Lutrynes are relatively small compared to humans. Lutryne body proportions are almost identical to human proportions by a scale of 3:4. The senses of the species are, for the most part, superior to humans, with the exception being hearing, which was evolutionarily less important than sight and smell.

Lutryne fish hunter (Art credit to Temiree)

The Lutryne Anatomy

The average Lutryne male stands at about 4'8" to 5'1", and weighs between 100-130 lbs. Lutryne females are similar in size, but tend to have larger pelvic bone structure, as they typically birth litters of 3-5 cubs.

Skull- The skull of the lutryne makes up approximately 7% of the weight and 1/5 of the height of a lutryne. It contains the lutryne brain, which is about 75% the size of a human brain.

Eyes- The eyes of a lutryne are forward-facing, and can see 190 degrees without moving their heads. When turning their heads, lutrynes are able to see 330 degrees of their environment.

Ears- The lutryne ears provide a lutryne with a limited hearing range, being able to hear 60-35,000 Hz, when compared to a humans 64-23,000 Hz.

Emotion- Most emotion can be read through the ears and whiskers of lutrynes, along with limited facial movement.

Senses- Lutrynes have a heightened sense of touch and smell, hearing being hindered by an evolutionary lack of a need for hearing. Taste is unchanged when compared to humans, as well as sight.

Teeth- Lutryne teeth consist of, at full maturity, eight molars, eight incisors, and four canines, totaling up to 20 teeth.

Fur- The majority of lutrynes maintain an extremely dense layer of fur with a very thin layer of fat underneath, if any.

Limbs- Lutryne arms are somewhat limited in their movement, with the shoulders and elbows being the most mobile and dexterous part of the arm. The legs of lutrynes are typically very thick, with much of it consisting of muscle.

Tails- The tails of lutrynes are primarily used for balance, as the legs of lutrynes have trouble maintaining balance.

The lutryne form is very slim, and is effectively built for aquatic activity. Some Lutrynes are born with a weak bone and muscle structure, and throughout their lives require the use of a cane to stay upright. It is believed that this is caused by a defect known as Redeus Syndrome, in which the genes of the fetus uses portions of a previous stage in evolution, especially at the joints and in the tendons.

Having a very dense layer of fur, lutrynes are unable to sweat, which results in serious overheating in warm environments like tropical and desert climates. Panting is the primary method of perspiration for the species, however in lutryne culture excessive panting is frowned upon, in particular at formal gatherings.

The lutryne race are susceptible to many diseases, including Leptospirosis, Lutrynic Enteritis, and Lutra Yellow Plague. Leptospirosis was a major problem in the early 1800's, due to a contaminated water supply due to an inadequate sewage and waste system, resulting in a minor drop in population.

The common life expectancy for lutryne males is 60-63 and females 63-66, the oldest current male and female lutrynes being 86 and 95 respectively.

Courtship and Reproduction

Many Lutrynes in the past participated in polygamy. However, over time, monogamy has replaced the practice, and as such courtship has become a much more important in getting a mate. Similar to humans and other sentient species, courtship is much more complex than in more primitive animals. Current trends in the lutryne culture have historically made ear-drilling (a practice where holes are cut into the ear of a lutryne, or other race), fur dying (the practice of changing the color of fur), and piercings in the ears a very attractive look, among other practices. Many male lutrynes also have taken up the trend of trimming their whiskers. Many experts advise against this practice, as it has shown that it causes mild to serious damage to the lutryne vestibular system, depending on the extent of the trimming.

Lutrynes, being mammal, perform sexual reproduction, contrasted to asexual reproduction performed by other primitive species. The female lutryne births between 3 to 5 cubs after a gestation period of 10-12 months.

Evolutionary Theories

The most-accepted theory of the evolutionary history of the Lutryne stems from genetic tampering by the Ancients approximately 2 million years ago. Otters, along with other animals such as the wolf, fox, and snake, were experimented upon to artificially develop sentience in a non-human race. The structurally-modern lutryne, according to this theory, has existed since about 980,000 years ago, and the behaviorally-modern lutryne has existed since approximately 50,000 years ago. According to this theory they belong to the species Lutra sapiens.

Another popular theory, believed by many Nativists, insists that an ancestor of the lutryne split away from the otter race sometime between 12 and 13 million years ago, this split being caused by the mountain range developing in southern Gondwana. This mountain range created a warm, dry climate that resulted in the ancestral lutrynes developing their bipedal movement. After this mountain range eroded over time, the colder climate that originally separated southwestern Gondwana returned, creating the modern-day lutryne.

The Unified Bipedalism Theory states that Lutrynes belong to the Bipedaliforma group. The ancestor of the Bipedaliforma is believed to the Proto-Bipedaliform which was believed to be sentient. This ancestor diverged into the Ambidactyliforma and Unidactyliforma. The Ambidactyliforma are believed to have survived while the Unidactyliforma perished. The Ambidactyliforma diverged into the Plantigradidae while others remained in the Digitigradidae. The Plantigradidae diverged into the Maridae, Terridae and Arcoudiforma. The Maridae diverged into various species including the Lutrynes who are believed to belong in the species Vidrus vidrus.