Ted Tubberman, creator of the vicious, huge wild felines of the Southern (Northern in our canon, but Southern in Pern canon) Continent, did not cease his experimentations with them. Indeed, many bizarre creatures lurk on Pern as a result of his meddling, though often in low populations restricted to specific places far from human habitation. Sometimes, though, these creatures are discovered, and when they are, the Mentasynth enhancement they were put through makes them vulnerable to Impression to humans.
Wyverns are the result of Ted Tubberman tinkering with fire-lizard DNA, in fact, so the eggs will be mistaken for a fire-lizard clutch. That is, until they hatch...
Wyverns look very much like fire-lizards, but their castes are different, with an intricate set of hide finish and colors which are caste-linked, though not so rigidly by far as with canon dragons. And there are other... changes. Wyverns were created by blending fire-lizard DNA with that of the hawk-sized predatory wherry species often used by modern Pernese in an equivalent of falconry, plus some genes from the Buteo family of Terran raptors, crocodiles and/or alligators, and certain scaled tunnel snakes.
The most interesting physical features derived from the tunnelsnake are their venomous structures, but in the wyvern this has been converted into a poisonous stinger instead of a fang situated in the mouth; it works the same way as a front-mouth snake fang, however, being hooked and hollow, with a gland at its base which produces the venom. When the sting impacts flesh, the resulting pressure on the gland causes the venom to flow through the hollow stinger and out its tip into the wound.
Unlike fire-lizards, wyverns eliminate through an anus between the hind legs as is normal for Terran life, and the long, muscular tail ends in a hooked, somewhat scorpionlike sting as described above, the venom of which varies in potency by the age and caste of the wyvern; naturally there is no fork to the tail. There is a separate genital slit through which mating is accomplished, identical to fire-lizard mating in all ways... physiologically, anyway.
In addition to this, wyvern bodies are armored with thin yet tough scales. In form, these are mostly snakelike -- thin, smooth, and overlapping -- though with heavier, thicker, more crocodilian armor toward the spine and, in some individuals, over the entire neck and tail as well. There are no flat, long, narrow "belly scales" like on a Terran snake, however, as they do not slither over the ground as snakes do; the belly scales are more like those of an alligator, flat and square, not overlapping, in regular rows.
The wings, however, form the most dramatic contrast between wyvern and fire-lizard at first glance, for they are those of a primitive bird! The animal retains three fairly large, strong, prehensile digits at the "wrist" of the wing, but otherwise the wing is structurally very similar to a Terran bird's wing, complete with fully developed primary, secondary, and tertiary feathers. Wherry-like protofeathers sprout over the "arm" portions of the wing on some individuals, but on most this area is scaled. All wyverns have a thick crest or mane of such wherry-type protofeathers, however, which may stop at the shoulders or may continue all the way to the sting at the end of the tail.
Like fire-lizards, wyverns have a carbuncle, as normal for the equivalent caste (subs being like the normal caste -- a sub-queen has a queen-style carbuncle) though the neck ridges tend to be hidden by the mane.
To reinforce their scales and carbuncles, like other members of dragonkind, wyverns eat the bones of their prey and precious stones and metals, but they also seek out certain native Pernese plants, almost all of which contain high quantities of boron and other trace minerals and metals. Wyverns preferentially seek out those which actively concentrate such matter out of the soil; these plants and fungi are often poisonous to other species due to the extremely high trace mineral and/or metal content.
However, almost all plants descended from Terran strains are useless to them except as the equivalent of junk food, but they may still eat it for the same reason humans eat junk food. Like fire-lizards, wyverns chew firestone and breathe fire, but their faces resemble that of wherries more than fire-lizards; their mouths are beaked, though fire-lizard-like teeth fill their jaws behind the beak. The eyes are fire-lizard-like, round and faceted, changing color with mood as normal for native Pernese life. Certain Terran-descended fungi are highly prized by them and even do contribute to their health, due again to the previously mentioned mineral/metal-concentrating quality.
The legs of a wyvern are rather more like those of a Terran hawk or eagle than those of a fire-lizard, albeit they are scaled for their entire length rather than feathered to the knee as a hawk's would be. Three toes point forward, one back, with large, powerful hooked talons. A Terran human, if they saw only the legs of a wyvern, would assume the animal was some kind of predatory bird.
Other than the aforementioned things, however, wyverns are physically very much like fire-lizards. They have headknobs, faceted eyes, and the same overall body shape and stance, except for having only four limbs and a tendency to hold the tail much higher due to the sting; they tend to be always unconsciously on guard, ready to sting at a moment's notice, at least in the wild. Human-Impressed wyverns will be less touchy... most of the time.
In terms of their social behavior, however, wyverns are rather different than their ancestors. First of all, they seem smarter than fire-lizards to humans; they aren't, not really, but they are more verbally oriented than fire-lizards, having been given a second dose of Mentasynth during Ted Tubberman's re-engineering. They resemble whers in their degree of verbal communication ability, but their reasoning skills are only somewhat more advanced than a similarly-ranked fire-lizard's would be. In short they are somewhere between flits and whers in terms of intellect and communicative ability with their Impressee.
Like whers, they name themselves after their Impressing human if they have one. In the wild they name themselves after their Queen; Queens, in turn, name themselves after their own mother. Because Impressed wyverns look to their human as their queen, they take their human's name to make their own the same way they would name themselves after their own queen in the wild.
To name a wyvern, first check its caste. If it is a queen, scramble the syllables of the Impressor's name, then add the prefix Ia' to the result. For exampl, if Breantur Impressed a queen wyvern, she might name herself Ia'turanbre. If it is any other caste but Scout, take two contiguous syllables in the Impressor's name and invert them. So if Breantur Impressed a wyvern that was not a queen or a scout, its name might be Ia'anbre. A Scout uses only one syllable from its Impressor's name, chosen randomly. So if he Impressed a Scout it might name itself Ia'tur or Ia'bre or Ia'an. If the Impressor's name is only one syllable, remove or scramble letters instead. For example, Vaet's queen might be Ia'tvea, while her Scout could be Ia'va or Ia'at.
This of course assumes the human doesn't have more than one wyvern in the same naming category. If they do -- for example, a person having an Officer and a Soldier -- the rules become a bit looser. For example if Ts'ban Impressed a King and an Officer they might call themselves Ia'tanba and Ia'bata, dropping letters in order to give themselves unique names. Always, though, queens will use the entirety of their Impressor's name, scouts will use a monsyllabic derivation, and those in between will use a two-syllable derivation.
Wyverns are rather more solitary in the wild than fire-lizards, which is part of why they are lesser in number. Each queen stakes out a large territory of fifty square miles or so for herself, and within that domain she will permit no other fertile females to remain except her own daughters. Any true Queens she happens to lay will be driven out to find their own territory as soon as they are mature, but sub-queens and mutant fertile females of lesser castes will be permitted to remain so long as they and their young accept the senior queen's dominance and obey her without question. Sometimes, if the senior queen has become weak for some reason (usually injury as, like fire-lizards, wild wyverns do not die of old age and are not susceptible to many illnesses) one of her Queen-daughters will challenge her mother for dominance instead of allowing herself to be driven out. When this happens, one of the two females often dies, but not always. It depends on a lot of factors, including the temperament of the two individual wyverns, the size and quality of the territory being contested for versus how far the younger queen would have to travel to find a territory of equal or greater size and quality, the size of the flock of males and lesser females that "come with" the territory, and many other things. Overall, one of the following four things tends to occur:
1.) The current senior queen defeats her rival, but, due to genetic inhibitions against slaying her own direct offspring or simply a more gentle or forgiving temperament, drives her away to find another territory of her own as she ought to have done in the beginning by tradition.
2.) The current senior queen defeats her rival and kills her mercilessly to eliminate the threat once and for all. This is usually done by senior queens who are relatively young and strong, and who therefore have plenty of time to bear more queen-daughters in the future, or else by senior queens who already have many queen-daughters who have successfully dispersed and claimed their own territories. If for any reason the senior queen does not feel secure in one of those two areas (either lots of existing queen-daughters or that there will be plenty of time to make more) she is very unlikely to slay her rival.
3.) The challenger wins and kills her mother. This is fairly common; when the mother is not strong enough to defeat her daughter, she dies at said offspring's claws or teeth as often as not. It is especially common when the mother is young enough to continue reproducing and also strong enough to pose a potential future threat or is so weak that she is incapable of defending herself.
4.) The challenger wins but allows her mother to live. In this scenario, the former senior queen is almost always very old. When this happens, she steps down in favor of her daughter and essentially enters a form of menopause. Queens always lay one last queen egg before becoming infertile due to old age. Because she is infertile, she is no longer able to be senior queen, so there is no conflict between her and her daughter. She reigns as an elder queen at her daughter's side. Occasionally, if the mother is young, strong, and smart, she will recognize that her daughter is capable of killing her and throw in the towel, choosing to disperse herself to start over in a new territory. This is rare, but it does happen, as wyverns are fairly intelligent, being capable of a limited cost-benefit analysis and basic reasoning skills.
The higher male castes, the Kings and Sub-Kings, also disperse from their mother's flock when they reach maturity, although they are not driven out by their mother, but rather by the other Kings and Sub-Kings of their mother's flock, and not nearly so aggressively as the mother-Queen will drive out her queen-daughters when they are mature and ready to claim territory. They tend to wander until they sense a queen that is not related to them, at which point they will join her flock. Brothers often travel together and join the flock of the same queen, though not always.
The lesser male castes tend to stick close to their mother's flock, though they do wander into neighboring territories to mate with the lesser female castes there (as they instinctively avoid mating with close relatives, even when the pairing will not bring eggs, an interesting trait which is -not- shared by fire-lizards, as everyone knows.) The lesser female castes, whether fertile or not, almost always remain with their mother, forming an impressive supporting clan which, collectively, enforces the queen's will and keeps the unruly males in line and in their place.
When Impressed to a human, however, they behave somewhat more like fire-lizards. If the human does not have a queen wyvern, any lesser castes will treat the human as their queen (regardless of the human's actual sex or gender identity) while if the human has a queen she will treat him as the senior queen and act as a junior or elder queen would, though she will remain fertile of course.
They will also integrate with a human's Impressed fire-lizards, respecting their pecking order as interpreted as being similar to theirs (that is, a queen will consider a Queen flit an equal, and so forth) though the two species never interbreed; a King flit will never chase a rising Queen Wyvern and vise versa. Even if that did happen, there would be no eggs. The two species are too widely divergent genetically.
Unlike fire-lizards, wyverns come in castes which are sex-linked but not color-linked. In general, any wyvern can come in any color or pattern, but there are commonalities between the castes which make them ultimately as easy to tell apart by their looks as fire-lizards and dragons are.
The castes of wyverns are as follows.
Greatest fertile female, laying 12-20 eggs once per Turn. Roughly the same size as a Queen fire-lizard but noticeably bigger overall; perhaps three to six inches longer from nose to tailtip on average. Extremely rare; 1% of all wyverns are queens. Wings and mane are iridescent with a rich, brilliantly hued rainbow schiller. The scales are both opalescent (milky) and iridescent, colored white, gray, or black. Sometimes there is a rainbow schiller as on the feathers, but only in patches or markings. Markings can be any color but will always have an iridescent and/or richly rainbow-schillered finish. There are NEVER metallic markings of any sort but any other type of marking is possible.
Queens are striking animals, instantly recognizeable in the same way a Queen flit is, but for different reasons. The base color of both feathers and scales is invariably pure white, pure black, or any shade of gray in between, though there can be 'warm' and 'cool' versions of all of the above in the base color and there may be markings of any color, in theory at least.
What makes them stand out is how their feathers -- wings and mane alike, regardless of base color -- are brilliantly, shimmeringly iridescent with a rainbow schiller. (The best thing to compare them to IRL would be opalized ammolite; it has both a richly-hued rainbowy schiller, which is a light-based play of color, and an iridescent finish, meaning to have a rich, shimmering, 'deep'/silky-looking appearance. Mother of pearl has a rainbow schiller and is pearlescent but not it is not usually iridescent -- however, abalone shell is iridescent instead of being pearlescent. The blue morpho butterfly's wings are simply an iridescent blue and nothing else. Et cetera.) Depending on the base color of the feathers, the effect may resemble milky opal, black opal, opalized ammolite, or certain Terran birds such as the Nicobar pigeon (which is gray-feathered with iridescent wings and "mane" of long thin feathers similar to that of a wyvern, though it goes all the way around the neck like a collar instead of just going down the back of the neck like a wyvern's does.)
The scales, too, are iridescent, often with patches or markings that are also rainbow schillered, though not always. Unlike the feathers, the scales are also opalescent (this means having a milkiness to it.) Any colored markings (as opposed to monochrome -- black, white, gray) will have a shimmering gleam like a morpho butterfly's wings, while blacks, whites, and grays will seem to dance and glimmer in the light as if they were liquid or silken. Even a medium-gray, markingless queen will stand out beautifully amongst all her kind due to the shimmering finish and milky depths of her scales and the rainbow sheen of her wings.
Greater fertile female, laying 9-12 eggs once per Turn. Size ranges from that of a large King flit to an average queen, generally closer to queen-sized. Very rare; perhaps 2% of all wyverns are sub-queens. Wings and mane are not iridescent but retain a queenlike intense rainbow schiller; the finish may be opalescent or pearlescent. Scales are white, grey, or black with a labradorescent finish. Some markings or areas may have a queenlike rainbow schiller. There are NEVER metallic markings but any other type of marking is possible.
Sub-queens act as the equivalent of junior queens, helping keep the flock in order and to relieve the needs of the kings and sub-kings. They are never the senior queen of a flock unless all the queens die, somehow, in which case, the group, led by the sub-queens, will adopt any wandering queen seeking territory who comes across the lock without hesitation. Until that happens, the eldest sub-queen still young enough to lay eggs acts as senior queen, though she -never- challenges to keep that position once a real queen shows up, and sub-queens almost never fight each other for leadership in the absence of a true queen, instead instinctively going by order of seniority.
Though they are not generally considered to be as lovely as the true-queens, and are noticeably smaller, with shorter, less prominent manes, the sub-queens are still very attractive. They, too, range from pure white through all grays in between to pure black, sometimes with a 'warm' or 'cool' tint. Their wings and manes, like a true queen, have a rainbow schiller, though they are -not- iridescent as a queen's would be. The finish will instead be pearlescent or, more commonly, opalescent. The labradorescence of the scales sometimes creeps onto the wings, either in the form of markings or an overall finish.
The scales show an odd sort of schiller known to Miners and Smiths as labradorescence, as it is seen in Nature only in one other place -- the mineral known as labradorite, which is uncommon but known on Pern. Some consider sub-queens more beautiful than queens; the labrador even though it lacks the rich iridescent shimmer of the true queens' feathers and scales. Unlike queens, a sub-queen's scales are not opalescent (milky) all over, though they may be so in markings or patches. There are NEVER metallic markings. Opalescence may appear in some markings or areas.
Greatest fertile male. Sires all castes, queen and sub-queen eggs both possible. Size range ranges from that of an average King flit to a small Queen flit. Quite rare; about 5% of wyverns are kings. Wings and mane richly iridescent, sometimes (not always) with a subtle, oil slick-type prismatic effect, but lacking a true rainbow schiller. Feathers rarely have a marking showing true queenlike schiller but it will always have a glossy finish, NEVER iridescent as with a queen.
Scales come in chromatic hues -- red, yellow, blue, et cetera -- but never metallic (gold, silver) or monotone (black/gray/white). The scales are brightly iridescent but without schiller, though the aforementioned oilslick iridescence may appear on markings. They never show queen-like rich schiller on their scales. Metallic colored markings may appear but will have an iridescent finish, not metallic. Kings do not show metallic finishes, nor opalescece, labradorescence, or adularescence. King's markings are usually black and/or white but may be anything not previously noted as impossible.
Kings exist pretty much solely to mate with the queens and sub-queens and to act as their honor guard. Though their main focus is definitely on their flock's senior queen, they will certainly also chase any sub-queen wyvern in their flock who rises to mate. They are quite loyal; most of them refrain from chasing females in neighboring territories that rise to mate. Of course, sometimes they do... but when that happens, the King tends to actually leave his original flock and join the one lead by the queen he is attracted to instead of flying for her, then returning to his old flock as if nothing happened. A few Kings are serial flock-movers, but this behavior is much more typical of sub-kings. Kings never remain with their birth flock, however, because at sexual maturity, they are compelled to seek a flock led by a queen who is not a close genetic relative.
In appearance, Kings are very attractive animals, though perhaps not as glorious as their female mates and leaders. Their feathers have a brilliant iridescent luster, with the feathers often having a noticeable, gradiated rainbowy sheen but not a fully manifest, brilliantly colored schiller (think the difference between an oil slick in sunlight or an actual rainbow and a really fine opal or fire agate). Kings are always without a trace of queen-like intense schiller, wings or scales, except on the occasional feather marking, and in those cases the marking, though having a definite, brightly hued rainbow prismatic effect, will have a glossy finish, never iridescent as with a queen.
Unlike queens and sub-queens, their base color might be any chromatic hue (red, purple, indigo, orange, et cetera) but is NEVER pure black, gray, or white, though those colors often appear as markings. Metallic colors like gold, silver, bronze, copper, and so on may appear as markings on kings, but usually only small ones, and never as the base color. The scales of a King are richly iridescent but lack any rainbow schiller for the most part. Oil-slick-like effects are possible over the whole body but are more likely to be confined to given markings or areas.
Greater fertile male. Sires all castes with queen, all except queen with sub-queen or lesser, but queens are much rarer than for kings. Roughly the size of a large Officer to average King flit. Rare; roughly 12% of wyverns are sub-kings. The wings and manes are adularescent (moonstone-like); that is, they have an opalescent, non-rainbow schiller. The scales are faintly iridescent or labradorescent. They are never rainbowy in any way except for the occasional faint, oil slick-like marking.
Sub-kings are the male counterpart to sub-queens. Though it is rare, a flock could end up with no queens OR kings. In this case, the sub-kings are there to continue the flock temporarily by mating with the sub-queens, although they will adopt any kings or queens which wander into their territory as described above. They also help hunt and keep the kings on their toes by competing with them for the favor of the queen as well as the sub-queens. In general, they do what they can in the flock, sometimes acting with the Kings, other times with the Officers, always somewhere in between.
It is perhaps for this reason that they are the least loyal of all castes; sub-kings, like kings, leave their birth flock at sexual maturity without exception, but unlike kings, they take a while to settle down in any one flock, often wandering in a large range between several flocks, always managing to arrive at the next one just in time for a fertile local female's mating flight. This continues until a sub-king actually wins a true queen's mating flight; at that point his instincts will compel him to stick close to his mate to protect his genetic interests and to, hopefully, continue to mate with her (though of course this is not at all guaranteed.) Once a sub-king settles down in a given flock, he usually stays... but some sub-kings are lifelong bachelors, and even if they decide to stay with a single flock for a while, there's always a chance that they might be lured into another cycle of wandering by the temptation of a queen's mating flight in the next territory over.
Sub-kings have adularescent wings and manes, as if made from some exotic sort of moonstone. Their scales are opalescent (milky) and faintly iridescent but never rainbowy except for faint oil slick type markings overlaying the base. There may be metallic markings, with a true metallic finish, but this is uncommon. In color, the scales are chromatic (red, blue, green, et cetera) and sometimes labradorescent instead of or in addition to being iridescent but the color range is always restricted as in real labradorite and never shows a rainbowy full spectrum of color.
Lesser fertile male. No queen, sub-queen, or king eggs. May rarely sire a sub-king or two. Roughly the size of an average to large Officer flit, though a few are big enough to vie with the sub-kings of their own species. Officers are uncommon but not rare; perhaps 15% of wyverns are Officers. The wings and mane are invariably of metallic hue (gold, silver, copper, bronze, or any other metal type color) but with a pearlescent rather than metallic finish. The scales are also pearlescent, but in chromatic tones, usually dark or deep ones -- cobalt instead of cerulean, pine green instead of mint, and so forth.
Officers are the elite hunters and warriors of a flock, spending most of their time marshalling the lesser castes in their day-to-day tasks -- seeking food, defending the territory from threats, making sure the queen gets the best share of any food found, and so forth. They also keep the kings and sub-kings sharp by competing with them for the favor of the females, though it is very rare for an officer to mate with a queen. They have more luck with sub-queens, but they still win less often than their larger male counterparts.
Officers are the first non-royal caste, and as such, they utterly lack any sign of rainbowy schiller, whether in the form of iridescence or opalescence. They do, however, possess a loveliness of their own; it's just more subtle and understated than that of the royal castes. An Officer's mane and wings are invariably metallic-hued, but with a strange and very attractive pearlescent luster instead of the expected glossy-
metallic finish. The scales, meanwhile, are also pearlescent, but are -never- metallic in hue, being invariably black, gray, white, or a dark version of a chromatic hue: navy blue, blood-clot red, pine green, et cetera. Though they can have pale grays or white as a base color, any chromatic tones will always be deep and/or dark, high saturation but low brightness in short. Any color of any brightness is possible for markings.
If there are metallic-colored markings they will have a metallic finish, even if they appear on the wings or the mane -- thus it is possible for an Officer wyvern to have, say, a pearly-golden mane with metallic silvery tips, or pearly-copper wings with metallic golden streaks.
Least fertile male. Sires only Knights, Soldiers, and Scouts if one happens to catch a fertile female, which is very uncommon. Mostly average to large Knight flit-sized, though the biggest approach the mass of an Officer flit. The very largest are, in theory, capable of catching sub-queens, and if there is no other option a sub-queen or even queen may mate with a Knight. This is pretty much unheard of, however. The vast majority of the time they mate only with Soldiers or with mutant females of their own caste. Even a mutant female Officer is too much for most Knights, though they'd have a much better chance with her than with any others.
A Knight's wings and mane are metallic in both hue and finish without exception. The scales, however, are chromatic in color -- usually bright or pastel rather than dark as with Officers -- with an adularescent finish. Metallic markings are common. Labradorescence, rainbow schiller, and oil slick iridescence are all impossible under normal circumstances.
Knights are the second most common caste after Soldiers. Roughly 25% of wyverns are knights. They work alongside their smaller sisters doing the flock's gruntwork -- hunting, fishing, seeking useful plants to gather and store, patrolling the territory, defending it from threats, et cetera ad infinitum. They are loyal and dutiful, almost always remaining in the same territory they were hatched in except when a Soldier or other small female rises to mate in a neighboring territory; they will not mate with the soldiers in their own flock unless they happen to be unrelated for some reason. (Such as if a Knight hatched in captivity but went wild instead of Impressing, found a wild flock, and joined it; it would be unrelated to the Soldiers in that flock.) Unlike sub-Kings, they never move to another flock in pursuit of a female. They chase in other flocks, but then return home, every single time.
Knights are pretty little creatures. Like Officers, their wings and manes are invariably a metallic color, though with Knights, the finish is the expected glossy metallic finish instead of the odd pearlescent finish the Officers show. A Knight's scales, though, have a rich adularescent (moonstone-like) sheen except for any metallic markings, which look like real metal just as the wings and mane do. The base color is always chromatic, never black, gray, or white, and usually bright or pastel rather than dark as with Officers, though there are exceptions. Markings can be any color.
Lesser female; usually infertile. Rare mutations fertile, laying 1-5 eggs once every Turn or two. Roughly the size of an average Soldier flit, though the biggest approach the heft of a Knight flit. A Soldier wyvern's wings, mane, and scales are entirely metallic in both hue and color, though the wings and mane are almost always a different color than the scales. (The scales may be gold with silver wings and mane for example.) They may exhibit non-rainbowy iridescence, adularescence, or limited-spectrum labradorescence on markings.
Soldiers are the most common caste. Roughly forty percent of all wyverns are soldiers. They are almost always infertile and are the wyvern counterpart of worker ants, though as their name suggests, the work they do tends to be more aggressive in nature; quick and sharp-clawed, they are excellent skirmishers, darting in, striking, and escaping quickly. As such, Soldiers are the front-line warriors of a flock, leaving the duties involving heavier lifting and moving to the Knights and Officers.
In coloration, Soldiers are strikingly beautiful. To some people they are even more appealing than the royal wyverns. Indeed, to the uneducated, who try to extrapolate wyvern traits from fire-lizard traits, a Soldier may well be mistaken for a queen, for they are invariably metallic in color, from nose to tailtip, wings and mane included, though the wings and mane tend to be a different hue than the body. The wings may be golden while the scales are silver for example but all Soldiers look as if they are made of real metal from beak to stingtip. Even any chromatic or black/white/grayscale markings they may show will have a metallic finish. They never exhibit any form of iridescence, opalescence, or pearlescence, however. They consume more metal than any other caste and it is this which results in their appearance; this makes them tougher for all the fighting they must do.
Least in rank of all types. Infertile, sexless. Equivalent of a white dragon or flit. Generally about the size of a topaz flit; however, a sport Soldier might end up being an inch or two shorter than even the smallest Scout fire-lizard, while a sport King could grow to the size of a small King flit. Coloration and finish depend on what it would have been if it weren't a sport; only sub-queens and below can become sports, and the vast majority are originally officer or below.
These usually do not survive in the wild, but the vast majority which actually manage to hatch will make it in captivity if well cared for. Scouts are a genetic mutation. As such they are typically colorless, a vague greenish off-white. Their finish will depend on what caste they would have been if the egg had developed properly. There are no sport Queens, thank goodness, but sport sub-queens have occurred; they can be told by their muted but noticeable rainbow schiller. The other castes are the same; a sport Soldier will be metallic greenish-white, as if made from some exotic form of platinum, while a sport Officer will seem as if he is made from faintly green-tinged pearl.