“This Fall, hes gonna hide YOUR nuts for the Winter….”

(rating TBC)


The voyage through the Deathworld Flora and Fauna of Rogue Trader continues with the Ptera-squirrel.  We hear a lot about Death Ferrets and Catachan Barking Toads, but did they get their own entries in Rogue Trader?  Nope.  But did the ptera-squirrel?  You bet your nuts it did!

No mention of Dark Templars in RT, no sir.  Harlequins?  Nope. Terminators? Nada.  Ambulls, Ptera-squirrels and Cthellean Cudbears on the other hand...

No mention of Dark Templars in RT, no sir.  Harlequins?  Nope. Terminators? Nada.  Ambulls, Ptera-squirrels and Cthellean Cudbears on the other hand…

From Warhammer 40.000: Rogue Trader, p.215

“The ptera-squirrel was once thought to be a peaceful and harmless animal – its cute, furry appearance making it a popular pet throughout the Imperium.  Then the truth emerged… the ptera-squirrel is merely one stage in the life-cycle of the creature.  Ptera-squirrels live for generations as soft-furred bundles of fun, and then for another cycle of generations as dangerous blood-drinking carnivores.  What prompts the change between the two forms is not known, as a result of which ptera-squirrels have become a common pest throughout the Imperium.  They resemble a fluffy squirrel, but have thin membranes between their extremely long forelimbs and their rear limbs.”

Ptera-squirrels in games make excellent nuisance creatures and can be controlled by a GM.  They can even form part of a game plot.  For example, anarchists release a flock of ptera-squirrels at a crowded spaceport.  In the ensuing confusion they mount a daring raid on a refueling spacecraft”

(I assume that its the Anarchists that mount the raid, not the squirrels.  That said, being an extract from the madness that is Rogue Trader, who knows?)


I learned a couple of things from this project.  Mainly, squirrels are even cuter than I remembered.


See?  Need more convincing?


Those arent even the cutest photos of squirrels that I could find, just the squirrels whose patterning would be handiest to copy…


Did I say that I learned two things?  I didnt actually.  I only learned that.

"WTF is that?!" said everyone involved about each party.

“WTF is that?!” said everyone involved in the situation about every other party involed in the situation.

Many thanks to regular commenter Warburton for furnishing me with this Reaper Miniatures squirrel (and a number of other suitable little familiars for this and other projects).  I look forward to seeing the little furry guys make-believe rip my gaming opponents little men to pieces.  I have you to thank for it Warburton 🙂

"Run, ruuun! Ordo Xenos and children first!"

“Run, ruuun! Ordo Xenos and children first!”


26 Responses

  1. Excellent! 😀

    I’m glad to see it not only painted, but so well and imaginatively. The colours really look great.

    Also, I had totally forgotten about the ptera-squirrel, so thanks for reminding me 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Weirdly, I had forgotten about the ptera-squirrel too. Even when the little furry guy that you sent had arrived it didnt dawn on me to use it as a ptera-squirrel. I only thought of that on the way home from work yesterday, so I fast tracked it. It was very enjoyable (although I didnt get enough sleep as a result, the cost of creativity I rather grandly suppose 😉 ).

      Thanks for the feedback (and the squirrel) Warburton!


  2. Warburton, you devil you. I’m guessing you’re one of the ‘anarchists’?

    Great post Cheetor 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Wow. That squirrel. He is chowing down on that dead head like brains are going out of style. I think this whole concept is fantastic and you realised it with panache – the kind of panache that gets your nuts bitten off. But it still counts. His eerie green tones suggest ‘hideous mutant’ but his fluffy tail says ‘come pat me anyway’. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am pleased with how it turned out, but I meant to juxtapose (yeah, I said it) an idyllic tuft of meadow flowers to the base before I photographed it, but I forgot (it was late). Im definitely going to have to add it later, to get the full horrifying effect.

      Im glad that you like it Captain. Perhaps it might be an appropriate environmental feature in Deathrace 40,000 this summer?


  4. “Carnivorous blood-drinking carnivores”… they are the worst!

    Fun little critter, I really like the base and the story it conveys. Without that aspect, the blood thirsty aspect might’ve been lost. Nice one!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Whoops, thats a transcription error by me Mattias. It should read “dangerous blood-drinking carnivores” (not that its exactly Dickens anyway, but y’know). I have corrected it above.

      When repurposing real world things like squirrels for use in sci-fi games I tend to follow some of the conventions set by Star Trek, Flash Gordon et al. Generally that means lurid and unnatural colours, although I try to stick to patterning as in nature (unlike the guys who painted the tiger stripes on Vultans poor old bear in the 1930s).

      This model was still going to look a bit cutesy-poo though, so I went full Monty Python with a blood drenched severed head. There is no question even to the casual viewer as to whether this cute little guy is a potential hazard or not now, hooray!

      Thanks fo rthe feedback Mattias!


  5. I’m with Mattias – the partially eaten head and gore drenched maw are all important… and also incredibly unsettling! Cracking stuff 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Axiom “incredibly unsettling” is just about the nicest thing anyone could say about something so ridiculous :). I was vaguely uncertain at the point when I glued the head to the base, but from there on I decided to channel early Sam Raimi and it was all good.

      I am mildly disgusted that I forgot the spray of flowers though. That would have been perfect >:/ Im going to have to remedy that later, it should take about thirty seconds.


  6. Cute and deadly, that’s a killer combo every time !
    Lovely little critter.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Its a nice little sculpt actually. A little cartoony (not that that has ever bothered me) but instantly recognisable as a squirrel rather than some other small mammal. And like you say, its actually even cute, despite the severed head.

      Thanks JB!


  7. Anybody taken down by this little dude must hang their head in shame. It’s a terrifying prospect.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Someone on LAF suggested that it is fielded in a future game of PA as a Terror – a one model force. Considering that the other models that I have suitable for Terrors are usually larger than a tank, the idea hadnt occurred to me.

      Obviously its very derivative of Monty Python, but isnt everything really? Plus the prospect of that little thing ripping Cpt. Jamesons guts out makes me salivate in anticipation…


  8. Hahaha, oh, sir, you got me there! Didn’t see this coming. This one is so awesome! You take these minis to another level, I’m truly amazed. You are an inspiration!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Suber, Im glad that you like it.

      The ptera-squirrel is a 100% authentic part of 40K history, Im surprised that we dont see more of them.

      Well, maybe not “surprised”…

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Awesome stuff. I’m eagerly awaiting the appearance of my favourite, the Catachan Face-eater.


    • I have had Face-eater plans for quite a while now, years in fact. I just need to knuckle down and do it, it’s a classic bit of old RT nonsense. Hmm, maybe next week…

      Thanks for the feedback!


  10. Man I completely forgot about this little beastie! I love your work, it makes me want one for my scenarios!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Legiocustodes.

      As I mentioned above, the ptera-squirrel concept had temporarily slipped my mind too. Never again!

      I’m glad that you are considering your own version. The world’s gaming tables need more ptera-squirrels.


  11. Beautiful (if you can say that) blood effects. Looks fresh and juice, just as the dread squirrles like it. I always knew they are evil creatures out to get us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Im glad that you like it. My lighting for photos is a bit off at the moment for a few reasons, so the gore looks a little flatter than it actually is. Still, the image gets the point across.

      As for how evil squirrels are, I suspect that they justifiably regard humans as worse. I certainly do. I however am less likely to leap down from a tree to devour a human head than a ptera-squirrel is, so thats something.

      Thanks for the feedback daggerandbrush!


  12. You totally need to update this 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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