Never before have I found such feathered beasts as unnerving as the dreaded cockatrice; measuring 4.2 meters long and standing at 1.8 meters tall, this terrible reptile is one of the many reasons searches for the elusive unicorn are excruciatingly challenging. Despite its reptilian affinities, it actually bears a heavy resemblance to a pheasant (more specifically, a chicken), with a bipedal posture, bird-like feet, a feathered body, and a feathered head with a large comb and a moderately long, hard beak; to add on to this, it commonly struts with the same prowess and dignity as a rooster would, it moves quickly and energetically (very much like a bird would), and the clucks, squawks, hisses, and screeches are very bird-like in tone. However, it has some reptilian traits that betray this avian appearance, such as the long, scaly tail that helps it balance while it walks, the many claws and spurs on its leathery wings, and the many sharp teeth hidden in its beak. Generally, the cockatrice is quite calm, only turning aggressive when threatened, hungry, or angry; however, it feels threatened by even the most subtle glares directed at it, and when it fends for itself, it fights with a ferocity and truculence on par with that of the more threatening monsters that terrorise Terra Pecunia, such as hellhounds, manticores, dragons, and sea serpents.
Cockatrices are omnivorous, feeding on grass, seeds, fruits, crops, and tiny animals; however, I've seen some cockatrices audacious enough to prey on large mammals such as badgers or deer. When hunting prey, cockatrices are able to kill a mid-sized mammal with one blow from their powerful legs, and they are able to put their prey to sleep with a toxin secreted from the spurs on their wings; however, when defending itself, the cockatrice will emit a low-frequency sound that stops its victims in their tracks and causes them to quiver for a long time, only resorting to the previously mentioned fighting tactics when this fails. If angered into a fury, it will amplify this dangerous sound and combine it with its horrid, raucous shrieks, incapacitating its foes and killing them in a matter of seconds; in short, such belligerents are literally screamed to death. Combined with its powerful legs and sleep-inducing spurs, this makes the cockatrice a deceptively lethal beast anyone could encounter; when wandering around in a dark forest, you should be extremely careful, as you can fall victim to the cacophonous sounds emitted by this vile creature.
"Do the chickens have large talons?"
My thirteenth mythical creature factfile so far, featuring the terrible, cacophonous Cockatrice! If you have any questions about it, ask me!