The dominant native race on New Luna, Yoescu (also known as ferretmonkeys) are two foot tall semi-intelligent quadrapeds (able to waddle on their back legs) with blunt, weasel-like snouts, opposable thumbs on all four limbs, long, prehensile tails, and a picture-based telepathy. They are a hoarding species, collecting metallic and shiny items in underground and otherwise hidden caches.
There are three races of ferretmonkeys, the Sea, Mountain, and Polar, with the sea possessing thin brown and green fur, the mountain having thick black and brown fur, and the polar having thick white fur.
Clans of ferretmonkeys range from forty to two hundred, each lorded over by a dominant female, called the queen. Females are slightly larger than males. Ferretmonkey diet includes nuts, berries, insects, eggs, snakes, small birds, and fish. The polar ferretmonkey has no known enemies, while the mountain faces a handful of felinoid and caninoid species that will pick off the sick and the weak. The sea ferretmonkey's one predator is the Kulbati, or death snake.
A clan of ferretmonkeys has a sort of psionic net over which information can be distributed freely and instantly. Separation from this net via travelling more than five miles or so from the next clan member or loss of psionic contact (frequently via psionic blockers) will quickly kill a ferretmonkey. This has severely discouraged the attempt to sell ferretmonkeys as pets, except in groups of four or more.
Status in societyEdit
As it was the ferretmonkeys that taught Captain Plaindid and his crew the necessities to survive in those first tough years, including the necessity of raised platforms in their city construction, they have always had a sort of 'mascot' status around Freedom City, like a Dalmatian at the fire house. On the islands, it tends to be a major taboo to harass or harm them, although no laws have been made protecting them or affording them any rights. This sort of tradition has remained due to the continued influence of the founding crew (of whom about half a dozen still survive to this day) and their descendants, who have a high concentration on the islands.
In other cities like Greenville where the founding crew's influence is felt less and cabals like the Carters and Millers have more sway, the ferretmonkeys are seen as more of an annoyance or pest, especially because of the Yoescu's hazy understanding of the concept of personal property and their love of shiny metallic items. This is one of the main reasons one does not see ferretmonkeys in Greenville very often.
Very little lab study has been done on ferretmonkeys due to their tendency to die when brought into captivity. This is believed to be due to some vaguely understood psionic net within clans that is a necessity for survival. The few that survive being forcefully taken from their clans (always in groups of four or more) tend to be insular and secretive, and are of more use in zoo-like settings than in any facsimile of research, though, again, not much has been done in the field. While many people have taught ferretmonkeys tasks, and even considered them pets, it tends to be under a 'borrowing' model where the ferretmonkey wanders off but comes back every so often, as they always belong to their clan first.