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Traits Rare
Level 1

Source: Pathfinder Bestiary 2, pg(s). 47

Type Magical beast
CR 1
Environment Any forest or swamp

Source: Stolen Land, pg(s). 76–77

A carbuncle is a strange, tiny, armored reptilian magical beast with a gemstone horn in the center of its forehead and strange magical powers.[1]

As the focus of intense rumor and legend, the hunt for a carbuncle's horn can be analogous to a snipe hunt. Carbuncles possess a simple form of empathy or telepathy, and can attempt to impress its thoughts or will on nearby sentient creatures. Adventurers who confront the creatures are often amazed to see the carbuncle seemingly will itself dead, in which case the horn crumbles to dust and the carbuncle becomes an inert corpse that dissolves into a puddle of slime within hours. Although some legends hold that their gem-like horn is a fabulously valuable stone, it usually crumbles to dust when harvested.[1]


Carbuncles stand one foot high at the shoulder, stretch three feet long, and weigh 12 pounds. The horns of male carbuncles tend to have warmer colors, while those of females tend towards cooler tones.[1]

Habitat and ecology

Carbuncles dwell in forests or swamps, where they are adept at hiding in the grass or undergrowth, in fruit orchards, or near berry bushes. Carbuncles are indifferent and apathetic creatures. Generally uninterested even in members of their own kind, they occasionally cluster in isolated areas where fruit is plentiful. Yet, they are clever enough to preserve themselves from danger by leading intruders into lethal situations while making their own escape.[1]

While shy, carbuncles are attracted to magic users and people carrying fresh fruit, and can be enticed into serving as a spellcaster's familiar.[1]

On Golarion

Carbuncles are known to live in the River Kingdoms[1] as well as Brevoy, including the Rostland Plains.[2] They are also popular as familiars among Prophets of Kalistrade[3] and in the Chelish city of Kintargo.[4]