Horses. When did they go extinct exactly?

There’s evidence of them being depicted in the art in the Valley of Dust and Fire (horse fountain, forget what page).

How did they all die out?

Why?

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Horses probably died out by the end of the Green Age. Are we absolutely sure there are no horses at all?

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I’m pretty certain I remember reading somewhere there haven’t been horses in a long time. They’re so long gone, they’re rare even as ancient skeletons in the Dead Lands book.

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In 2e. I can’t find a source that flat out says they are all extinct. Page 75 of Mind Lords of the Last Sea has horses as a random encounter on the shores. It’s possible to this is a typo. But maybe they aren’t all extinct. any horses on Athas would probably try to eat a person.

That said, 4e flat out says on page 5 of the DSCS rule book “Athas has no cattle, swine, or horses; instead, people tend flocks of erdlus, ride on kanks or crodlus, and draw wagons with mixes and mekillots.”

I haven’t found anything that indicates when they would have died out though.

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As resources became scarce in the early Brown Age races turned to eating horses.

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Perhaps all the horses had mutated into centaurs and subsequently killed by Centaur-Crusher.

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Well, most Athas “normal” fauna went extinct, almost certainly because of the rapid changes to the environment at the end of the green age. The species that did survive were either very isolated and protected somehow (like the dolphins of the last sea), or highly mutated/evolved to better cope and compete with all the dangerous new critters coming out from the pristine tower area (such as bears growing boney armor).

As far as I know, horses aren’t very suited for the sandy wastes and stoney badlands that covers most of athas, so they are restricted to scrub plains and savannas, but these areas are a magnate for both other herbivors and the predetors who are drawn to them, so maybe they couldn’t compete and died out.

To sum up, I could see an isolated population of normal horses surviving in the last sea area, or an evolved population resembling Przewalski’s horse clinging to existence in remote areas on the edges of salt flats, exploiting the abundance of salt, as well as utilizing the flat hard surface of the ground to quickly escape at the first sign of trouble, and relying on its barrenness to deter predators from pursuing

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Horses are capable of omnivorous feeding, btw, despite being herbivores. War stallions used to be fed meat to make them more aggressive, apparently, and there are numerous individual cases of horses trying out non herbivorous menu choices.

Wouldn’t be surprised if Athas horses became carnivores.

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Mares of diomedes dark sun style, eh?

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I didn’t know this but omnivorous equines ala Harum is a nice idea. Perhaps based upon zebra? Somewhere completely remote from the Tyr basin perhaps, maybe east of the Silt Sea? Speculating.

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I’ve been without my laptop up until recently… had an encounter with the blue screen of death. Made my saves though. Took me a bit to get back to this though.

  • Desert centaurs are canon monsters in 2e…

I have an ongoing joke/explanation in my game that kanks are driven nuts by the smell of horseflesh. This accounts for why they’re rare or extinct. The giant ant mounts have eaten most every horse in the Tablelands.

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