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Disclaimer: THE SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH DEPARTMENT OF MIDDLE-EARTH WISHES TO REMIND THE PUBLIC OF ITS STRICT POLICY AGAINST DIRECT INTERFERENCE AND INTERACTION WITH SUBJECTS OF STUDY. DUE TO THESE REGULATIONS, RESEARCHERS WERE FORBIDDEN TO PARTAKE IN MEASURES WHICH MAY HAVE PROVED POTENTIALLY HELPFUL TO SAID SUBJECTS. THE SRDM ACKNOWLEDGES THAT WHILE THIS POLICY APPEARS CRUEL AND UNUSUAL, IT IS STRONGLY BELIEVED THAT SUBJECTS WILL BENEFIT MOST IN THE LONG RUN IF EXPOSED TO THE LEAST AMOUNT OF HUMAN CONTACT POSSIBLE.
THE SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH DEPARTMENT OF MIDDLE-EARTH ALSO WISHES TO REAFFIRM ITS PREVIOUS STAND AGAINST THE HUNTING, TRAPPING, AND POACHING OF ELVES.
LASTLY, THE SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH DEPARTMENT OF MIDDLE-EARTH WOULD LIKE TO REMIND ALL MEMBERS OF PETE (PEOPLE FOR THE ETHICAL TREATMENT OF ELVES, COPYRIGHT 2002 BY JOCELYN) THAT THE DEPARTMENT DOES CARE FOR THE WELFARE OF THESE MARVELOUS CREATURES. PLEASE STOP THROWING THINGS AT SCIENTISTS, THEY DO NOT DESERVE IT. ALSO, CHAINING YOURSELVES TO VARIOUS AREAS OF THE BUILDING IS NOT ENCOURAGED. THE SRDM IS A LOW BUDGET, NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION. WE DO NOT HAVE THE NECESSARY EQUIPMENT TO FREE YOU FROM THE CHAINS. WE DO, HOWEVER, HAVE GUARD WARGS.
~ Notes IV: Interaction and Poaching ~
The Wood-Elves were observed to be an overtly clean species. Rigorous washing rituals occurred in almost every river and stream. Community bathing was not uncommon. It is believed the Telerius galadh engaged in communal bathing for the benefits of safety in numbers—as the forests of Mirkwood are exceedingly dangerous—as well as for the social aspects. Groups of both male and female T. galadh were not observed to bathe together simultaneously. Bathers consisted only of all male or all female members.
*Acts of grooming, such as hair brushing and hair braiding were readily participated in by members of both sexes. Similar behavior has been observed in primates, and it is believed these activities serve to strengthen bonds and promote social interaction.
Groups of warriors were often observed to sit in hair braiding circles, or hircles, before departing into the woods to hunt. Similarly, groups of female T. galadh often engaged in hircles following bathing or gathering. Females tended to favor the incorporation of flowers into their braids. It was observed that one male braiding a flower into the hair of his companion often resulted in semi-violent retaliation.
Researchers agree that the act of hair brushing indicated stronger familiarity between two Elves. Hair brushing occurred most commonly between a mated pair of Elves, or between two female siblings.
It must here be noted that unlike primates, Wood-Elves were not observed to engage in the removal and consumption of lice or ticks from each other’s heads. The Elves did not appear to favor lice or tick consumption even when researchers offered the insects.
The T. galadh have a profound relationship with the forest. It is a symbiotic partnership researchers have only begun to understand.
It is generally known that plants follow a slow pattern of daily movement, which corresponds directly to the east-to-west path of the sun. This rotation occurs over a period of hours, and is far too slow to be noticed by the human eye.
The T. galadh are capable of increasing plant response from gradual to immediate movement. Researchers are not certain how this is achieved. It is hypothesized the Elves emit varying degrees of electromagnetic energy, much as they emit a glowing bioluminescence. Studies have shown plants readily respond to increases and decreases in electromagnetic forces, due to the various polarities of ions infused during water uptake.
Unfortunately, researchers were unable to test the Elves’ magnetic discharge.
[Taken from the notes of B.W.] “The high-pitched beeping of the electromagnetic sensor rendered the Elves nervous and uncooperative. A.B. was nearly shot with an arrow when she attempted to scan Phoebus—who seemed less than thrilled. I removed the device’s batteries, in attempt to illustrate the sensor’s harmlessness. The Elf Zippy took one of the batteries, weighed it in his hand, sniffed it, and then put his tongue on it. I fear he may have been electrocuted. I also fear the Wood-Elves more sensitive to electrical fields and charges than humans. Zippy’s eyes have gone all funny and he has taken to drooling. I sincerely hope whatever ails him is not permanent.”
The Wood-Elves demonstrated remarkable devotion to the trees and plant life within their realm. Grounds were tended to on a daily basis, and the Elves appeared to sing to the trees on more than one occasion. Trees within the Wood-Elven realm were found to be healthier and possess shorter recovery time from damage than those growing outside the territory. Signs of leaf decay, particularly in plants, were noticeably less. Elves were not observed to partake in the felling of growing trees, and any structures built within the trees seemed fitted to the trees’ natural contours.
*Though the Common Wood-Elf is by nature an organism which does not prefer to stray far from its original territory (much as the rabbit), recent observations reveal an increasing number of migratory Elves. T. galadh migration is to a much lesser degree than their Noldor or Galadhrim counterparts, yet it is feared this nonetheless contributes heavily to the already-dwindling population.
Flocks of migratory Elves are known to travel over prolonged distances at a measured pace. Dirge-esque songs of mourning often accompany this solemn, progressive march. Migratory patterns always travel in a Westward direction, until the Elves reach the sea. Once the sea is reached, the Elves have been documented as “disappearing.” Though researchers are unsure as to what exactly this entails, it is hypothesized the Elves may, in fact, engage in behavior similar to that of Lemmings (See also: suicidal drowning). It is believed that stress and habitat destruction may trigger Elven migration.
POACHING OF THE T. galadh
During researchers’ final week of their year-long study in Mirkwood, the realm was beset by a terrible sequence of events. We again refer to the notes of project head B.W.:
“I do not know if I possess the words to describe the heinous crime we have witnessed. My pen shakes even as I write of it now.
They came at the first light of dawn, disguised as those vile, vile Mary Sue beasts. There were Beaten Mary Sues, Unconscious Mary Sues, Amnesiac Mary Sues, and other horrible variations we had never before seen. The male T. galadh were instantly attracted—how could they not be? Led by Phoebus—bold, brave Phoebus!—they charged to aid the damsels in distress.
So enamoured were they, the T. galadh never saw the others lying in wait. They never saw the nets; the men armed with tranquilizer guns and clubs.
We tried to warn the Elves. Tried distracting them with band-aides and zippers. We shouted and screamed. We threw our remaining ration cans of SPAM and canisters of powdered milk at them. But our efforts were in vain.
Poor, poor Phoebus! He fought back fiercely—curse his golden head! It took 15 tranquilizer darts and two nets to bring him down. Even then he did not go without a fight. My eyes still grow teary as I recall his valiant efforts.
They took Phoebus. Took him away to Valar-know-where, and are probably already calling him ‘Legolas.’
Thus with this sad turn of events does our time in Mirkwood draw to a close, and we leave the forest with heavy hearts. And yet, though only 1/3 of the male T. galadh population remain, and Mirkwood’s dominant male has been lost, I cannot help but think we have come away enriched and wiser than before.
P.S.- A.B. made me write that last paragraph. We spent one whole year in the same tree, in the depths of a forest full of deadly creatures, had our sleeping bags stolen by Elves, my favorite Elf was nabbed by poachers… and you think I feel enriched? Enriched…hah! I’M GOING HOME.”
In recent years, most notably since the release of the acclaimed ‘Lord of the Rings’ movies, the practice of Wood-Elf poaching has increased to astronomical proportions. The T. galadh of blonde hair coloration, already an extremely rare trait amongst the Wood-Elves, are often the target of these crimes.
Once captured, the T. galadh are shipped to various locations beyond Middle-earth. They are then sold on the black market as “Legolas.” There have also been reports of “Haldir” labeled T. galadh, though to a much lesser degree. Many T. galadh perish during shipment, and those that do survive often fall into the hands of writers or fans who mean well, but unfortunately do not know how to properly care for them.
The number of dark-haired Wood-Elves falling victim to poachers has also shown disturbing increase. It is rumored many of these Elves are dyed blonde—an act which often results in subsequent balding and toxic death—and, again, sold on the black market as “Legolas.”
Researchers stress the importance of avoiding such acquisitions. These Elves are NOT Legolas. They were not meant to live within the confines of closets, basements, or dorm rooms. Similarly, the T. galadh’s natural habitat CANNOT be recreated by placing a tree or flowers within a room—especially if these plants are of a plastic nature. The Wood-Elf is a highly social creature, and requires broad expanses of wooded and fringe forest in order to survive.
Again, these Elves are NOT Legolas. They were not meant to live within the confines of closets, basements, or dorm rooms.
It is asked that any who may have mistakenly purchased a T. galadh immediately contact the local DNR. Do not release the T. galadh into the wild (or city), as this may prove deadly to both Elf and human should the Elf become distraught.
If it is absolutely necessary to own a T. galadh, the Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth recommends the purchase of a Mark I LEGOLAS or Mark II LEGOLAS model. These flawless creations are manufactured within Middle-earth, and obtainable through Theresa Green (See: author 416464, story ID 1454334 Legolas: The Owner’s Guide and Maintenance Manual). They are readily available for consumers of all ages. Please do not buy live T. galadh from Mirkwood. Doing so only perpetuates the horrible practice of poaching.
If you would like to join the fight against poaching of the T. galadh, the Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth requests that you sign the attached petition. It may be found by clicking the button labeled ‘Review’ at the bottom of this page.
It is hoped Notes From the Field provided valuable insight to the magnificent and elusive Common Wood-Elf, Telerius galadh. Researchers wish to acknowledge and express the utmost thanks and gratitude to those who participated in the Lecture Hall. Thank you for your insightful questions and comments.
Until next time, and, as always: Happy Reading.
PLOT BUNNIES CITED:
Elven grooming rituals: Off-kilter
Migratory patterns: Luinramwen
And Special Thanks to Theresa Green for allowing the Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth to endorse the Mark I LEGOLAS and Mark II LEGOLAS.
* * *
THE FINAL LECTURE
ccg- The Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth is extremely grateful you found Notes to your liking. Researcher B.P. was last seen consuming wine while on the banks of the Forest River. His whereabouts are still unknown. The T. galadh’s wine tolerance is a subject of great interest to scientists; currently a grant is being pushed to further this research. Thank you for your support of the SRDM.
Aurora Light- On behalf of the researchers of Notes, the SRDM thanks you profusely for your wonderful comments. B.W. wishes to state her 21st birthday celebration last week did, in fact, consist of Fizzy Pear pop (or soda, depending on your location). She also adds, “It was Zippy.”
Noldor Lass- Researchers at the SRDM have consulted with Haldir, and the possibility of surgical procedure to remove the most unfortunate Smug Look has been discussed. As Haldir is somewhat put off by the fate that befell Legolas in the hands of the SRDM, it is unknown whether or not he will seek surgical treatment. He is currently using a mixture of various herbal remedies. Researchers thank you for your kind words in regards to Notes III, though still insist the chapter really was very boring.
RavenLady- Thank you for supporting research work of the SRDM. We hope you continue to enjoy the works, and that you join the effort to save the Common Wood-Elf.
Arabiasil- Researchers wish to convey the utmost gratitude for your show of support. They are pleasantly surprised that biology and chemistry lab write-ups have actually come to some good use. The SRDM hopes you continue to enjoy Notes, and again thanks you.
Raven Firedragon- The Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth is astounded by the break-through discovery of Wood-Elf lamination. Researchers are pushing for an immediate grant to continue observation in this area, in the hopes that the Lamination Hypothesis be supported or disproved. On behalf of the researchers at Notes, please accept this plush Mary Sue voodoo doll, complete with Screaming In Pain reflexes and detachable head. Thank you for supporting the cause.
Phoenix Flight- It has been documented that researcher B.W.’s 21st birthday last week consisted of Fizzy Pear pop (or soda) and ¼ glass of Molson Canadian. No drunkenness was observed, and the pop was quoted as being, “good.” Thank you for your continued support of Common Wood-Elf research.
PrincessEilonwy- Though the Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth has no direct affiliation to Middle-earth Paraphernalia Inc., scientists have heard rumors of more realistic-appearing Silmaril silk-screening soon to be implemented. If you wish to trade in your bag for a newer one, the MEPI will replace the bag free of charge. Researchers thank you for your condolences and pass them along to the family of J.Z.. Indeed, in-field studies may prove potentially fatal, but scientists are well aware of the risks. Your comments regarding the professionalism of scientists C.S., B.W., and B.P. have been recorded. (It must be noted that the whereabouts of B.P. are still unknown.) It was Zippy.
e- Your research into the relationship between T. galadh and K. hillius is particularly insightful. As to date, researchers are stumped by these apparent alliances, though it does appear they are a rare-occurring happening. Unfortunately, the T. galadh male of Ithilien is somewhat un-observable, as it appears researchers have inadvertently dissected the subject (see: Observation and Dissection of the Common Wood-Elf, Telerius galadh). Nonetheless, scientists have begun further research into the complex relationship of the two species. Thank you for supporting the Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth.
Hildestohl- The Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth is a non-profit organization funded by private and public donations. The latest grant received came from the charitable author Ithilien. As researchers only observed the Common Wood-Elf for a single year, there have been suggestions that the observation be made into a life-long study, spanning perhaps several eras of mortal life. However, this endeavor promises to be extremely costly, and budget cuts loom. Thank you for participating in the Lecture Hall, and for supporting the SRDM.
fliewatuet- Researchers praise the Webster’s New World College Dictionary, Fourth Edition, for aiding in Latin and, in some cases, Greek or Old English names. Researchers are still unsure of how to go about obtaining blood samples from the T. galadh. Drugging was suggested, though the Elves’ reaction to such substances has yet to be observed. Thank you for taking an interest in the SRDM.
Lamiel- Researchers wish to lay blame for slow updates on the very much despised ‘marinus stiria,’ as well as subsequent budget and time cuts. The apparent resurgence of the T. galadh Legolas is of high interest to the Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth. Scientists find this a very unnatural and disturbing occurrence. It is believed such returns from the dead may show proof of vampirism; perhaps this warrants a stake to the heart before things get out of hand? Thank you for your astounding break-through information, as well as continued support for the SRDM.
JastaElf- Researchers at the SRDM, upon believing the received letter to be of true Telerius galadh hand and not forged, though somewhat shocked by the apparent writing and mental capabilities of the Elves, are flattered and humbled by His Majesty’s most noble invitation. If the request still stands (as His Majesty appears to have met a rather sad and cruel fate), the SRDM would be more than happy to comply. The Scientific Research Department of Middle-earth also wishes to express its deepest condolences in regards to the most regrettable demise of King Thranduil. It is hoped he may be recovered yet.
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