Casting Instructions for 'Controlling the Thunderbird'
The Thunderbird is a large avian creature that is found in the western area of North America. Its range extends from some of South America to parts of Canada, and similar species are found worldwide-- one example would be the Roc of Madagascar. This huge, predatory species is no doubt a dangerous creature. Its wingspan can exceed forty feet, and it is known for hunting buffalo and other large game. However, this impressive beast can be trained, as these instructions will detail.
SURVIVING A THUNDERBIRD ENCOUNTER:
1: Dodge backwards. When a Thunderbird attacks, it almost always does so by swooping down from above and throwing its wings out behind it. On a sunny day its shadow will be unmistakable. The loud screech this beast emits is also hard to miss. The bird will expect its prey (you) to run fowards as if you were an animal, and will adjust its strike to SLIGHTLY AHEAD OF WHERE YOU ARE. To avoid it, leap BACKWARDS out of the attack path. This will allow you to dodge the initial strike.
2: Duck and roll. Once on the ground, it is hard for a Thunderbird to take flight in a combat situation. To lift its large bulk the creature must flap its wings several times while hopping fowards in order to lift off. If it does this, you should have time to run to cover, such as a cave, tall grass or a building. Insteda, though, the creature will probably slash at you with its claws or snap with its beak. To avoid being maimed, stay on the move. Randomly run around it, dodging and frequently switching directions.
3: Ground the bird. This can be done in several ways. The recommened method it to lasso it by the neck and fasten it to the ground, then stun the animal with either a powerful stun spell or an elephant tranquilizer gun. Use whichever is easier to come by.
4: When the creature is unconcious, run if your goal was to escape. Run until you reach shelter, and look back occasionally in case your pursuer has woken up. If you intend to use the creature, read on.
TO CONTROL THE THUNDERBIRD
1: Acclimate it to your prescence. After binding it heavily, feed it at LEAST two large prey animals (buffalo or elk) per day. Look it in the eye and make sure it knows you are not a threat.
2: Train it to hunt. Keep the creature in your sights while letting it go to hunt on your own. Try clipping its wing feathers to keep it from flying to high, far or fast. Once it kills an animal bring it down with spells or the tranquilizer gun. Do not render the animal unconcious but bring it out of the sky. Take some of the creature's meat, then reward it with food. Repeat until the bird learns to give you a portion of food without being asked or attacked.
3: Using standard falconry methods, you can then attempt to teach the Thunderbird other commands. These include attacking an enemy, fetching an object, carrying objects, using storm magic, etc. If you make a special saddle for it, a Thunderbird can also be trained to carry a human rider.
TO USE A THUNDERBIRD IN MAGIC
Thunderbird feathers are extremely powerful tools used in storm summoning, and the Thunderbird itself posesses strong powers of storm control and magical attack. Most notably, the animal can emit actual thunderbolts to stun or kill prey, though this ability takes a lot of energy and is not commonly used.
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