Non-agriculturist Food sources
How then are we to remark upon the development of agriculture? The so-called abundance which is called superior to subsistence is to us utterly revolting. Are not our tooth-filled mouths evidence that we are meant to consume the legged walking things of the world? Are not the glands full of poision evidence that we weaken our prey and pursue them through the endless labyrinthine tunnels? Do our claws cease to function? Will our gut take in the mushrooms which form habitat for our bastard kin? All of these things speak to us: we are hunters of the proudest stripe and will not be reduced to glorified insectoid reproductive aid for the mushrooms above us. Let the so-called Higher Humanoid tend the shroomgrove! Let the Dragonkin pick parasites from his shroomoid home! These collaborations, aimed at creating an excess, are against the very concept of our species. We are predators, we are hunters. The unfit among us fail to eat and die. Anything else we must call abomination and starvation of the soul.
Borlaug (Serpentfolk) – Against Starvation
The reptilian humanoids are both blessed and cursed in the way that their biology differs from the mammalian or “higher” species: on the one hand, their cold-blooded bodies allow them to live comfortably in areas that the higher humanoids frankly never could; but on the other hand, their digestive systems are simpler, they only take meat as food and tend to binge—that is, to eat a large meal when it is available, then digest it while acting in a sluggish manner.
The major food sources for the reptilian humanoids are as follows:
- Troglodytes Living in the deepest caverns of the vulcan rim, Troglodytes have the fewest natural food sources. While there are are occasional infestations of cave-dwelling arthropods (particularly spiders and centipedes) which serve as a major food source when available, more and more troglodytes must resort to heading up from their preferred habitat and hunting other sentient for food. While exiled or solitary serpentfolk have traditionally filled this role, diminishing and more-concentrated populations among that race has led to more and more all-out tribe-band kill-and-eat-or-be-killed-and-eaten conflicts. Unfortunately for the deep-dwelling troglodytes, these engagements tend to go poorly for troglodyte bands. Perhaps the acquisition of agriculture will be necessary to preserve troglodyte populations? Few surface-dwellers desire either, and it remains unclear whether a Troglodyte could even be made to digest a surpashroom.
- Serpentfolk With falling numbers, there is more of a serpentfolk’s natural food: great centipedes and giant insects to go around than in past ages. Additionally, most serpentfolk aren’t averse to consuming the corpses of invading troglodytes. All of this, combined with the ever-present possibility to chow down on a stray Darkmantle that overplays its ambush leaves the contemporary serpentfok a surprisingly well-fed race.
- Vishkanya and Lizardfolk occupy extremely similar ecological niches and have very similar diets. Each is happiest when feeding on their mutual prey-species: lizards, rats, and weasels. The continual and multi-species hunt for the small game, however, has hurt those populations, driving Lizardfolk and Vishkanya alike to prey on snakes and other, more dangerous game. As time has gone on, Lizardfolk and Vishkanya have come into further conflict. The development of poisonous blood by the Vishkanya, for instance, is an adaptation aimed at reducing predatory interactions from the Lizardfolk. Contemporary Lizardfolk have learned to abhor the consumption of any sentient being, although they still kill Vishkanya as necessary. Vishkanya are unlikely to return the favor, and frequently eat the Lizardfolk that they’ve killed.