A drawing of an ekerl. Note the long limbs, wrinkled jaw-edge and manipulatory tentacles.

The ekerl (pronunciation: 'EH-kurl' plural: ekerles 'EH-kur-LAYS') are the sapient race of Badas. Descended from primitive plants in Dek, they are now the only sapient organisms within the sprawling forests of their homeworld. They are well-known for their grace in moving through the trees and their ability to survive in the 'Death-garden planet'.


The jaws of an ekerl open sidewards. The inside of the jaw contains a snake-like toungue, attached to the back hinge of the jaw, and a pair of smaller jaws attached to the back of the mouth. The main jaw is made of sharp, fang-like teeth, which usually point inwards to trap live animals or other food liable to escaping the mouth, but can be pulled back into the sides of the jaws if the ekerl needs to get something out of his mouth. These fangs also contain a comparitively mild venom ('mild' on Badas being able to cause enough pain to an Arbotile to send it to the floor). The second set is a pair of shears to slice up food. The third set is a pair of grinders, which can crack nuts and bones, and grind food up for digestion. Many have compared these sets of jaws to an industrial machine, or 'something you really wouldn't want to put your hand near'.

Ekerles have three pairs of manipulatory tentacles. They have a hard base, which muscles attach to, letting them move the tentacles around faster and more easily. They have a rough surface, similar to shark-skin, which lets them grip objects without worry of said objects slipping. They have three long legs, with feet that can grasp objects and that have a pad of spongy tissue between them. This pad stops them from bruising their toes after long jumps to other branches. They are able to pick objects up with their feet, but they prefer using their tentacles. The bones of ekerl are made from lignin, like a plant. These are denser than most types of wood as they have to take much more stress than a sessile tree's wood does.

Ekerles have a pheremone communication system. They will often spray criminals with caution, danger and/or dislike pheromones, which can be detected by police devices.


Ekerles are social creatures by nature; they dislike being alone and love company. They regard a 'person' as anybody they deem able to communicate. This means that pets are considered a true member of a family, and are given weddings, funerals and birthdays. They are very trusting by nature and easily pick up on other's body language and speech patterns. The change of body language can seem fairly odd to those who are not used to it. Individual tribes of ekerles meet with their neighbours often, sharing ideas and resources. They understand that they have to make their own way, though, when it comes to alien species.

The average ekerl house is in a treetop, near a water source. Wooden ladders are used to get up and down the tree. A winch attached to a bucket, with a long cord of rope, picks up water from the source and brings it back up to the house. Many ekerl have a contraption, a type of centrifuge, that they clean their drinking water with. This was discovered by chance in an incident involving a broken bucket and a bowl. The device is a large wooden wheel, sealed with tree gum and with closed holes along the side. A peg-like device is inserted into one of the holes as the wheel spins, and a piece of tubing connected to a cup fills with the lighter, cleaner, clearer part of the water. Ekerles' ancestors used to drink water from bromeliad-like plants, which had less diseases in them than river water, explaining their preference for clearer water.


Ekerles are well-known for their common cackling laughter, and their repetition of emphasised words. Some have been driven mad by ekerles that have been insulted or disgusted enough to repeat threats, insults, blackmail and other aggressive communication at them.

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