In this turbulent world far too often we feel the desire to relocate. Perhaps a change of scenery will provide us the stability and safety we desire? For modern dragons this desire is all too familiar, in fact it is the reason they have survived up to our present age at all. But unlike other animals, easily able to migrate or flee to and fro at the slightest hint of danger or detection, dragons have to deal with an all too human problem when the need to move strikes them. Logistics. Dragons have earthly treasures to consider and favorite furry friends too! Add to that the need to avoid detection and dragons have real challenges to face when moving house. So how do they do it?
Choosing the evening hours for travel goes a long way when avoiding prying eyes and a cloudy day doesn’t hurt either. Safety in numbers is also a good rule. It is not uncommon for smaller dragon species to nest and hoard with larger dragons both for the obvious protection reasons and the less obvious being-a-dragon-in-our-modern-age-and-having-to-stay-hidden-all-the-time-is-boring-on-your-own reasons. ‘Many claws also means more treasure transported’ as the old dragon saying goes. Even when a dragon and companions take great care to relocate in secret and leave not a hint of their passing, the transportation of their precious treasures over great distances with claws, tails, teeth and what ever primitive means they can devise means that losses can’t be avoided.
So if you ever awaken to the sound of coins tinkling on your roof or find a stray watch or even a cookie crumb trail of a completely random assortment of shiny objects in your garden perhaps it isn’t your neighbor throwing trash over your fence again, perhaps this time you had a scaly logistical nightmare passing over your house on the way to greener pastures.
Dragons are greedy by nature.They have a “first come, only served” policy when it comes to distribution of edibles. Even if there is plenty of food to go around there isn’t enough to go around. There is an abundance of stray food in our modern world, enough to ensure that the dragon population could be well fed, but often this isn’t the case. Dragons will expend much energy ensuring they are the only ones to eat when an easy meal is found. In our modern world one man’s trash is a dragons menu.
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Majestic. That is the word that best described the great dragons of old. They were proud and noble and terrible to behold. They looked down upon the works of men and defied them to the last. Fear was an emotion that they were unfamiliar with. Their hunting ability was legendary- They would take and none could challenge. Not so with many a modern dragon. They would sooner flee than risk a direct encounter with people, which has kept them alive until now. However from time to time an anomaly appears, a modern dragon with a fearless heart, a heart like one of the dragons of old. Though often small, these dragons are fearless hunters and are able to take from man what matters most!
“If you love something, set it free. If it comes back it’s yours, if not, it was never yours to begin with.” Let the words of this famous saying sink in. Meditate on their wisdom, let the soothing peace wash over you. Sayings like these are comforting to us and it shouldn’t be surprising that other intelligent beings like dragons also have comforting sayings. In fact they even have one that is quite similar in nature to the above mentioned! Albeit coloured slightly by a different value system. Though I’m sure some people subscribe to this version of the saying too. I believe it goes something like this ” If you love something, it’s mine, if I love something ,it’s mine! You can’t have it! it’s mine! don’t you look at it… I see that look in your eyes! No stop it! I can’t hear you! NA NA NA NA NA NAAAAAAAAH! MINE, MINE, MINE!” I might be paraphrasing a bit but you get the just of it.
In the spirit of Valentine’s day, what better time than now to reflect on the pairing practice’s of dragons? Dragons amazingly enough are monogamous. The modern dragon is a rare creature so once a mate is found they tend to have a short courtship which often involves ritualistic dancing or feats of strength and prowess. Especially in the instance of two or more males of the species competing for the affection of a female. The social structures of different species of dragon vary but the end result is always the same. Once the choice of mate is made the bond is strong and life long. The benefits for the paired dragons are many, as the old saying goes “two dragons in the bush are best left alone”. They do not couple solely for breeding though, being intelligent creatures they enjoy company. Two dragons are more capable of defending themselves. Medieval man discovered this fact many times, upon vanquishing a great dragon they would often have to also deal with the distraught mate. Two dragons hunt more successfully too, which is a good thing as they often have little mouths to feed. But that is a post for another time.
Many of the worlds most ancient civilizations contain legends of the Ouroboros, the serpent that devours it’s own tail. Mankind has adopted this dragon as a symbol for infinity and wholeness, even immortality. The largest description of this dragon was Jörmungandr the world encircling serpent. Although Jörmungandr has disappeared into the mists of time he did set rather a tall bench mark for all following generations of Ouroboros dragons. Here we see a little male of the species trying his best to impress a would be mate. The larger the object the dragon can encircle the more impressive he is. Having successfully circled the globe success is almost guaranteed.
Dragon behaviour has been incredibly hard to document, due simply to their rarity. Many questions have been answered though,through painstaking research and countless hours of observation. We know that they blow fire, that was one of the first things to be documented. We know without a doubt they are reptilian and almost always have sharp teeth. They often have claws and tails too. As you can see we have answered many questions…scientifically, with science.
There is one answer however that has eluded dragon researchers for more than a century. Many of the world’s top dragon researchers have gone to their graves longing to know the answer, dying sad deaths bereft of meaning or comfort…until now. I believe we now have the best chance we have ever had to answer the question. What question? I hear you cry!
The question is this: How many dragons does it take to change a light bulb?
Look long and hard at this artist depiction of what the answer to this question could look like. This is what we in the field of dragon research could call science’s “best guess”. Its probably definitely true.