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The Hri
The Hri are a sapient intelligent mammalian species.
Physical Apperance, Biology, and Anatomy
Hri average 155 cm in height for males, 140 cm for females, and 150 cm for asexuals. They weigh on average about 45 kg for females, 50 kg for asexuals, and 55kg for males. They are descended from four limbed, upright, bipedal carnivore originally adapted to an arboreal existence. Hri have two legs, two arms, and a short tail They have short fur over most of their bodies, but not on the face or genitals. The head is moderately large compared with the rest of the body.

The face is relatively elongated with a muzzle extending 3-5 cm outwards and a high forehead. Although the jaws are somewhat short, they are extremely strong, and have enough power to crush the bones. Their heads are surrounded by manes and collars of hair, which varies in color from glossy black to pale yelow. Their skin color ranges from gray to Iight tan. The ears, located high on the skull, are large and flaring at the base which taper up to rounded or pointed tips and stand erect.

Hri have 40 permanent teeth - 12 incisors, 4 canines, 8 carnassials, 4 premolars, and 12 molars. The strongest and sharpest are the four large canines. The teeth are less likely than humans to form dental cavities because of the very high pH of their saliva, which prevents enamel from demineralizing.The tongue surface is covered with dentine like filiform papillae, used in assisting the tearing of eaten meat. Hri have a larynx similar to humans, but rather elongated in comparison.

The Hri have lithe, graceful, and highly flexibility bodies. Hri have 7 cervical vertebrae, 14 thoracic vertebrae, 7 lumbar vertebrae, 5 sacral vertebrae, and 7 caudal vertebrae in the tail, allowig great spinal mobility and flexibility. Attached to the spine are 13 ribs, the shoulder, and the pelvis.

The legs appear short when compared with the length of the body, but are powerful. Strong muscles produce instant power for leaping or great bursts of speed. The sharp angles of the knee and "heel" of the hind legs also contribute to the power for sudden sprints, for climbing, and for jumping. Due to the lack of a hip joint ligament which keeps the femur held into the pelvis, Hri have less restriction in the movements of their legs than humans..

The arms are also powerful and extremely flexible. The arms are attached to the shoulder by free-floating clavicle bones, which allows them to pass their body through any space into which they can fit their heads. The arms are 150% as long as their legs, largely due to the length of the radius and the ulna rather than the humerus. The fingers and toes are curved, allowing them to better grip onto branches.

Hri have five fingers, and a thumb, and six toes. Fingers are slightly lomger and thinner than humans, with four joints instead of human's three while toes are shorter and stubbier. The inner toe is opposable like a thumb. Both fingers and toes have short protractile claws. There is also a highly specialised dewclaw on the outside of each fore-limb, which folds jackknife fashion into a horny covering at the outside of the elbow and the inside of the knee. The retracted claw is held in its "sheath" by an elastic ligament. A muscle in the arm pulls on a tendon, which in turn pulls on the joint to which the claw is attached, and the claw comes out of its sheath.

Hri have a keen hearing and and can detect an extremely broad range of frequencies, with an auditory range from 45-45,000Hz, being most acute in the 500-30,000 Hz range. This sensitivity is further enhanced by the large movable pinnae ("ears"), which both amplify sounds and help sense directioanlity. The ears are able to independently point backwards as well as forwards and sideways to pinpoint the source of the sound.

The Hri's large and prominent eyes are placed well forward on the head. Thus the Hri have binocular vision, permiting a 200 degree field of vision. In bright light the pupils contract to narrow vertical slits. But in the dark they enlarge to round openings that admit a maximum amount of light. The retina has an even balance of cones and rods. Hri have a fovea centralis slightly smaller than humans. Hri are tetrachromats, possessing four different types of cone cells. The basic colors seen are red, blue, green, and ultraviolet There is a choroidal tapetum cellulosum behind the retina, which reflect light back through the retina, increasing the light available to the photoreceptors. These features give a good balance of vision in varied lighting conditions and focus ability. A postorbital closure, or bony cup, surrounds each eye for protection. The eyes are also covered by a nictitating membrane.

The Hri nose is a rhinarium or "wet nose". The tip of the nose is a leather and usually black or reddish. It is usually cool and moist. Hri have an acute sense of smell. A chemoreceptor organ similar to the The vomeronasal organ (VNO), or Jacobson's organ, is present between the buccal and nasal cavities.

Hri have roughly eighteen vibrissae ("whiskers"), nine on each side of the nose., in three rows of three. These thick hairs with deep roots have significant nerve endings, which give extraordinarily detailed information about air movements, air pressure and anything they touch. They also have a number of vibrissae like hairs on other parts of their bodies, especially over the eyes, on the chin and at the back of the legs.

Among the Hri, taste is the weakest sense. Basic tastes detected include salty, sour, bitter, piquance, savoriness ("umami"), fatty acid, metallic and water. Notably, sweet is missing. Generally salty, savoriness ("umami"), and fatty acid are considered pleasant tastes; and bitter, metallic, and water are unpleasant, with sour and piquance being dependant on the individual.

There are three sexes: male, female, and asexual, with a ratio of 2:5:3. The most notable difference is the increased size and mane in the former and lack of genetalia in the latter. Females have a gestation of ten months. Children are born singularly, in pairs, or trios. They are weaned after about two years. Hri become sexually mature at between twenty and twenty-five years. Average birth weight is 2 kg. Hri females are are polyestrous, with seasonal anestrus periods in colder months. Females have an estrus cycle of approximately 25 days.

The average lifespan is 120 years. The oldest known natural Hri lifespan is 197 years.