Cariama Cristata Titanus

big-bird-final.jpg The title, and indeed the whole existence of this image can be blamed on Wikipedia.

Once upon a time, I was trying to remember the proper species name for terror birds, the ostrich-sized carnivorous birds that lived in the Americas and probably shared territory and prey with Smilodon. (Smilodon is totally cool enough to deserve its own illustration, and will no doubt receive one at a later date.) By searching for 'terror bird', I found the genus Phorusrhacos. While reading about this group of what I presumed were extinct birds, I found out that there is in fact a living modern relative.

Don't get too excited. They're less than a meter tall.

Seriemas are stalking grassland predators of snakes, frogs, small birds and rodents. They've also been known to eat corn, if they're hungry enough. They are tameable, (Raise it to think it's a chicken, and it'll defend your chickens from snakes) but not domesticated. Also, to quothe Wikipedia, Seriema have an "extensible second claw that is raised from the ground. Although this resembles the "sickle claw" of Velociraptor and its relatives, it is probably not used in the same way."

Probably not? Hot damn!

So I found some pictures of Serimas, some pictures of ostriches, some pictures of people riding horses, and some pictures of Centurian-style armor. The result is entirely the responsibility of Google, Wikipedia, and the internet at large.