Fareedah Sand Dragon, Sahalianar
|Natural Habitat:||Fareedah Desert|
|Average Weight:||0.60-0.70 ounces|
|Coloring:||A deep purple with golden speckles|
|Distinguishing Features:||Emits heat from the golden markings on its body.|
A small creature, the Fareedah Sand Dragon (known to the Najjir as Sahalianar and among the Arangothians as a Kitchen Salamandar) has gained popularity since it was first brought to Drache by Najjir tribesmen around 478AT.
At maturity, males and females are indistinguishable, both deep purple with numerous golden speckles and markings which emit heat.
Dissection of the salamander revealed two digestive systems, one which burns fuels to provide continuous heat, while the other digests organisms for sustenance. Experimentation has revealed that the two are not linked - the lizard will die if not fed with a regular diet of insects and occasionally fruit, as well as fuels such as coal or charcoal shavings. The species seems particularly fond of hay as a source of fuel.
The reptile is native to the Fareedah Desert, where predation on the little lizards by smaller relatives of the Goliath Scorpion is thought to have caused the evolution of its protective emission of heat.
In the wild they digest dead silica from the crystal formations in the Fareedah Desert as their main source of fuel, living in colonies of between 20 to 30 adults among the crystal formations.
During breeding season, which occurs during the coldest months of the year, males will consume vast amounts of fuel - enough to ignite flames from the golden speckles on their heads. The larger and hotter the flame, the more likely it is that a female will choose them.
Once breeding has taken place, unlike most reptiles, the ovoviviparous Sahalianar will dig a nest in the sand where the female incubates her eggs internally while the male brings her both fuel and food. Hatchlings emerge from their mother completely purple and almost translucent. As they mature, their skin thickens, darkens, and the gold markings begin to appear. Both adults will care for the young until their first gold markings begin to appear, presumably once the second digestive system is fully developed.
The little lizard is extremely social and appears quite intelligent, making excellent and helpful pets. Used by the Najiir for years as a source of heat, Arangonthians are becoming increasingly fond of the Kitchen Salamander - replacing cooking fires with small colonies of the little creatures, which require very little in the way of care.
Escaped salamanders have been known to set stables on fire during breeding season, and so care should be taken to make sure they remain in their stove boxes.