There are many types of various natural disasters that the Clans have had to overcome in their territories. Some can be sent by StarClan as a sign or signal, but sometimes a simple storm is just a storm. The Clans often have to move out of their camp to avoid the disasters, and many cats die because of them.
Types of Disasters
- Fire is deadly to the Clans because of the wooded areas they live in. Even a small spark can lead to a raging forest fire which destroys all the flammable material in its path. Dry spells can make a fire more of a possibility. ThunderClan especially has had much trouble with fires due to their territory being the most thickly wooded and the most prone to fires spreading quickly. Yellowfang, Patchpelt, and Halftail were all killed in a forest fire in Rising Storm. Also, in Dawn of the Clans, another fire had started near Clear Sky's camp, injuring, then killing Moon Shadow and causing Gray Wing to develop asthma.[source?] Forest fire can be deadly as many cats can die by breathing in too much smoke or being burned by the flames.[source?] Additionally, forest fires kill or frighten off prey which can lead to starvation after the fire.[source?] They can also lead to prophecies and omens, such as the omen Cinderpelt predicted about Fire and Tiger.
- Storms are quite common, but not all are dangerous. In extreme cases, they can cause other disasters. Heavy rain can cause flooding, and many forest fires are caused by lightning striking a tree and setting it on fire. On rare occasions, large amounts of rain can erode the dirt from around a tree's roots, making it fall. Multiple storms or lengthy storms can lead to flooding. Flooding is mostly trouble to RiverClan because of the rivers surrounding their camp. They are sometimes forced to move out of their camp to avoid the flood. There have also been occasions when cats have been indirectly killed by lightning.
- Flooding is not unusual for the Clans in heavy rains, but RiverClan is most susceptible to it because of their habitat along the river. Floods often occur in newleaf after the leaf-bare snow and ice has melted, causing the excess water to flow to the river and make the water level rise.[source?] In some cases, RiverClan has been forced to relocate their camp temporarily due to flooding. In Bramblestar's Storm, each Clan had to relocate their camps due to a flood. This flood also severely affected the Twoleg settlement nearby, driving out the Twolegs, some of which abandoned their kittypets.[source?] SkyClan suffered a flood, killing Lichenfur.
- Sometimes in greenleaf the streams dry up from heat and lack of rain causing a drought. When this happens, it affects all the Clans, although sometimes RiverClan is better off because the river allows them a larger water source that does not often dry up completely. This can be very dangerous for an entire Clan as water is essential to survival, and warriors have to pitch in and fetch water, using moss, for kits, queens, and elders, so that they do not die of dehydration.
Snow and freezing
- Snow is frozen water that falls from clouds and is very cold. During leaf-bare, temperatures are always lower than usual, and this can present several dangers. Not only is it colder for the cats themselves, but it also causes scarcity of prey, and frost can kill herbs used by medicine cats, making them helpless to heal their Clanmates. Freezing of the river is also dangerous to RiverClan because it makes them unable to catch fish, their primary food source. On rare occasions, a cat (especially a very young or very old cat) can freeze to death if outside in snowy, freezing temperatures for too long (such as Mosskit).
- On very rare occasions, a thunderstorm will accompany snowfall. This unusual type of storm is always accompanied by snowfall, instead of the usual rain precipitation. This phenomenon occurred when Shadowpaw, the medicine cat apprentice of ShadowClan, ventured alone to the Moonpool. The white strikes of lightning are so bright that it temporarily blinds Shadowpaw. Taking this storm as a sign from StarClan, Shadowpaw asks what the rumbling thunder and striking lightning could mean, but his yowls go unanswered.
- Falling trees are hazardous and can crush whatever they fall on. Falling trees occur naturally in the forest due to old age, borers, erosion, floods or lightning strikes, but Twolegs sometimes chop them down. In the New Prophecy Series, Twolegs chopped down the forest to build a new Thunderpath. One well-known example of a falling tree is in Fading Echoes, when a tree fell from its place after heavy rains. It killed Longtail and broke Briarlight's spine, leaving her crippled for life. It also damaged the ThunderClan camp and the nests had to be rebuilt.
- There are also other, less common natural occurrences that still present danger to the Clans. When the sun eclipses, it removes the Clans' only source of light, and leaves them barely able to see for a few minutes. Also, in rocky areas such as the tunnels, ThunderClan's hollow, Sunningrocks, or the Tribe of Rushing Water's mountains, rockfalls are possible and can crush a cat just as easily as a tree.
Disasters in the Books
In the Super Editions
- StarClan sends lightning to briefly light a tree on fire to prove that Moth Flight's words about the formation of medicine cats were from them and fulfilling part of the split the skies prophecy.
- While retrieving bark for Rocky, Micah is killed by a falling tree branch when Willow Tail and Red Claw start fighting on it.
- In the prologue, there is a flood, and RiverClan is forced to move out of their camp. The flood completely destroys the camp, and after it is over, it takes more than a moon to rebuild. Stormkit and Oakkit are born while RiverClan are moving out, and they are forced to shelter in an oak tree. Duskwater, who was making dirt when the camp flooded, dies somewhere in the floods, and Brightsky goes back to find her, but fails.
- On a cold, snowy night, Bluefur takes her kits, Stonekit and Mistykit, to live with their father, Oakheart, in RiverClan. Mosskit freezes to death, while her siblings make it.
- All of a sudden the lake starts flooding the hollow. Bramblestar warns every cat of ThunderClan to get out of the hollow to somewhere safe. They all climb up trees to safety. Briarlight, because of her paralysis, needed help to get to safety. The Twolegplace had been flooded, too. Bramblestar rescued Minty, Frankie, and Jessy from the flood that nearly took the Twolegplace. The other Clans are also displaced from their camps.
In the Dawn of the Clans arc
- A harsh cold season and heavy snows leaves the Tribe of Rushing Water in near-starvation. To reduce the numbers of cats needing fed, several members of the Tribe, lead by Shaded Moss, leave the mountains to follow the sun trail toward the forest.
- A fire sweeps through the territory around Clear Sky's camp. Moon Shadow is wounded by the fire and later dies of his injuries, and Gray Wing develops asthma from breathing the smoke.
In The Prophecies Begin arc
- The river is flooded, causing problems for RiverClan and forcing them to leave their camp, unable to catch prey, and take away two of Mistyfoot's kits, one being Reedwhisker. Fireheart and Graystripe rescue the two kits learning of the Clan's trouble and begins to bring them food from their territory until the flooded river settles down. ThunderClan also has issues making it to the Gathering and must travel in ShadowClan and RiverClan territory to get to and from Fourtrees.
- A fire strikes ThunderClan's camp, and kills Yellowfang, Halftail, and Patchpelt. Bluestar identifies it with the "fire" prophecy, and she loses her faith in StarClan completely, seeing that the fire almost destroyed the Clan instead of saving it.
In The New Prophecy arc
- During a dry greenleaf, the Clans suffer from drought. WindClan is especially hurt by this due to the lack of streams in their territory, so Tallstar asks Leopardstar if WindClan can take water from the river to survive the drought. Leopardstar agrees, but warns them not to take any prey from the river. Also, in ThunderClan, Leafpaw and Cinderpelt experience a fire, and Cinderpelt discovers the Fire and Tiger omen.
- During Mudclaw's rebellion, a thunderstorm brews. When he is standing by the lakeside confronting Brambleclaw and Hawkfrost, a bolt of lightning strikes a tall pine tree on the island and it topples right onto Mudclaw, crushing him to death. This ends Mudclaw's attempt to steal WindClan's leadership, and also provides the Clans with a bridge to cross to the Island for Gatherings, as they needed a Gathering place.
- Brambleclaw sees that Twolegs started a fire on the clearing near the ShadowClan border to cook their meal, and fears that they will set the forest to fire, but in the end, they don't.
In the Power of Three arc
- It is briefly mentioned that Rainwhisker was killed by a falling branch during a storm between Sunset and The Sight.
- When Lionpaw, Jaypaw, Hollypaw, Heatherpaw, and Breezepaw go to save the WindClan kits in the underground tunnels, it begins to rain and the tunnels fill up with water from a hole in the roof, causing them to flood. Only thanks to Fallen Leaves' and Rock's advice to Jaypaw are they able to find the kits and a way out of the rapidly filling tunnels through an underground river leading into the lake.
- A solar eclipse occurs during a battle between the four Clans, frightening them and removing their only source of light. This sudden shock causes the battle to break up.
- When Lionblaze, Hollyleaf, Jayfeather, Flamepaw, Dawnpaw, and Tigerpaw are making a fake sign from StarClan to convince Blackstar to believe in them again, they dig up the roots of two trees, causing them to fall over. Because this was planned, no cat was injured.
- A lightning bolt causes the forest near ThunderClan's camp to catch fire, so all the cats evacuate the camp. Ashfur uses the event to attempt to take revenge on Squirrelflight by killing Jayfeather, Hollyleaf, and Lionblaze in the fire, but Squirrelflight reveals they are not her kits and no cat dies. The cats shelter in the Abandoned Twoleg nest during the fire.
- When Hollyleaf runs into the tunnels, the entrance collapses behind her in an unexpected rockfall. However, the rock fall did not kill her.
In the Omen of the Stars arc
- The Clans are suffering from a major drought during this greenleaf from lack of rainfall, and all the streams and most of the lake have dried up. All the Clans are barely able to survive with little prey and scarce water.
- A small fire later strikes ThunderClan's camp due to the heat. A water patrol of Graystripe, Cloudtail, and Lionblaze throw the moss at the fire in order to stop it.
- The drought is finally alleviated when a patrol containing cats from all four Clans journey upstream and remove a dam holding back all the lake's water, which rushes back to their territories.
- After heavy rains for a long period of time, the ground is muddy and unstable, leaving the roots of a tree on the edge of ThunderClan's hollow loose, and eventually making it fall into the hollow. Fortunately, Dovepaw is able to hear the shifting of the roots before it falls and the camp is evacuated. While retrieving a mouse for Mousefur, Longtail is killed and Briarpaw's backbone is broken as the tree falls on them. Many of the nests in the camp had to be relocated or remodeled around the fallen tree.
- Coming Soon
In the Field Guides
- RiverClan is mentioned to use a Twoleg bridge to get to the Gathering when the river is flooded.
- Silverstream is on a night watch when the river starts to flood. The RiverClan cats move the kits, medicine supplies, and several warriors try to hold back the water. Mistyfoot's kits go missing and Fireheart and Graystripe later return them.
- Dustpelt recounts how the falling tree that resulted in Mudclaw's death gave them a way to get to the island for Gatherings.
- On Bluestar's page, Rock talks about how Mosskit had died from the cold on her way to RiverClan.
- Rock recalls that Cinderpelt had received the Fire and Tiger omen in a forest fire on ThunderClan territory.
- Rock mentions that Mudclaw was killed by a falling tree.
- ShadowClan warriors under the leadership of Brindlestar have begun to hunt in ThunderClan territory during a harsh leaf-bare. Brindlestar argues with Whitestar, the ThunderClan leader, that they need the prey but Whitestar refuses as ThunderClan needs it as well. A tree branch falls between the two Clans as the argument gets more heated and it is taken as a sign from StarClan that trespassing on the territory of other Clans is forbidden and this creates the second law of the warrior code.
- When Beechstar of SkyClan dies he appoints his son, Mothpelt as leader. Wanting to take revenge on RiverClan for his father's death, Mothpelt attempts to attack them by swimming over a flooded river. However, many of the SkyClan cats nearly drown and have to be saved by Robinwing and Maplewhisker, the Clan deputy.
- StarClan sends lightning and clouds to cover the moon when Ripplestar has ShadowClan attack the other Clans at a Gathering. The lightning causes Ripplestar to fall to his death from the Great Rock.
In the SkyClan and the Stranger arc
- A flood sweeps through the gorge after heavy rains. Lichenfur drowns and SkyClan has to rebuild several nests.
- SkyClan continues to rebuild after the flood that ravaged their territory and camp.
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Revealed in The Darkest Hour, page 143
- ↑ Revealed in Into the Wild, page map
- ↑ Revealed in Rising Storm
- ↑ Revealed in Secrets of the Clans, page ThunderClan Territory
- ↑ Revealed in A Dangerous Path, page 12
- ↑ Revealed in Midnight, page 111
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Revealed in Fading Echoes, page 145
- ↑ Revealed in Crookedstar's Promise, page 2
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 Revealed in Crookedstar's Promise, page 3
- ↑ Revealed in Code of the Clans, page 94
- ↑ Revealed in Forest of Secrets, allegiances
- ↑ Revealed in Beyond the Code, page 86
- ↑ Revealed in The Fourth Apprentice, page 2
- ↑ Revealed in The Fourth Apprentice, pages 1-3
- ↑ Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 480
- ↑ Revealed in Night Whispers, page 224
- ↑ Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 183
- ↑ Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 484
- ↑ Revealed on NASA.gov
- ↑ Revealed in Lost Stars, chapter seven
- ↑ Revealed in Midnight, page 303
- ↑ Revealed in Midnight, page ch.1
- ↑ Revealed in Fading Echoes, page 142
- ↑ Revealed in Fading Echoes, pages 144-145
- ↑ Revealed in Fading Echoes, page 146
- ↑ Revealed in Fading Echoes, page 171
- ↑ Revealed in Eclipse, pages 227-229
- ↑ Revealed in Sunrise, page 314
- ↑ Revealed in Dawn, page 6