What started as rumours and whispers have now become official as the drum heights in Harper Hall resounded with the message carried from Beastcraft Hall and confirmed by Fort Hold and Peyton Hold: there is sickness in the Fortian herds. A respiratory illness that the wet, cold spring is not helping. Cases of herdbeasts dying have been reported and precautions and preventative measures against the illness spreading are already in place.

Which means: trade, in herd animals anyways, has come to a standstill. Imported animals from outside Fort's territory have also ceased from fear of contamination or risking the illness being carried further. For now, it appears controlled and contained within Fort and Peyton Hold. Could it just be a minor scare?

Regardless, it means Fort Weyr's supply of fresh meat both for dragon and human consumption is at risk. What's a Weyr to do? Why… hunt out of territory! The Weyrleaders have approved /controlled/ hunting in the south and encourage all dragon riders to feed their lifemates south if they can. There are whispers too that the Weyrlings have been recruited, voluntarily, to go south for hunting not only for themselves but to help bring back some for the Weyr.