Thunderbirds are a species of avians native to Azin. In the wild, they inhabit the dense jungles in the interior of Azin’s equatorial continent, but having been domesticated for centuries, they are now found everywhere in the M’rowan Commonwealth.
Thunderbirds are about the same size as a common raven, a typical specimen measuring 50 to 60 cm long with a wingspan of 100 to 125 cm and a weight of 1.25 to 1.75 kg. They have not evolved quite as far from reptiles as Earth avians have: Although feathered and warm-blooded, thunderbirds also have scales and retain vestigial teeth in their beaks. Their usually bluish-black feathers are somewhat more crystalline than is typical for avians on Earth, giving their coats a brilliant multi-coloured sheen in direct light.
Thunderbids lay eggs that are usually green with spots in various colours, such as red, brown, yellow or blue, depending on the race and environmental factors. A few rare eggs are coloured blue; these are highly sought-after, as they usually contain the strongest and healthiest specimens. The eggs change colour when close to hatching, which will usually happen after 40-50 days of incubation.
The owner should have considerable amounts of food, preferably raw meat or fish, ready for the hatchling. It will be exhausted and ravenous from the effort of breaking through the shell, and will impress on whoever feeds it first.
An average egg sells for ca. 10-20,000 credits