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World of Origin Taldain
Universe Cosmere

Tonks are domesticated sandlings used as beasts of burden on the Dayside of Taldain.[1][2]

Appearance and Anatomy[edit]

Tonks are quadrupedal. Their heads and the front halves of their bodies are similar in size and shape to a mule, while their hindquarters more closely resemble those of a kangaroo.[2] Their bodies are covered in gray carapace, which is segmented and particularly thick along the top of the body.[2] They have long, thick tails, prominent horns coming out of their heads at various angles, and clawed feet that appear to have opposable thumbs.[2]

The horns and carapace can be dissolved by water; even a few drops can dissolve most of a horn.[3] As a result of this, they do not drink water and only eat sand in large quantities.

They always give off a faint sulfurous smell and their flatulence is particularly odorous.[1] Khrissalla suspects that sandlings can somehow metabolize sand, although she does not understand the science behind the process.[1][3] Their droppings are known as tonk guano.[4][5]

Usage and Behavior[edit]

Riding tonks have very weak minds. Whenever they get confused they assume it's a sandstorm and bury themselves beneath the ground.

Tonks are often used for transportation in the deserts of Dayside, carrying both riders and supplies.[2] They are weak-minded[6] and easy to lead.[2] Calling someone a tonk in Dayside is considered an insult, presumably because it implies that they are slow-witted.[4]

When used for riding, they are fitted with a saddle, bridle, and saddlebags. On longer trips through the desert, tonks may be fitted with vessels to carry extra water.[2] Tonks are usually trained to turn or adjust their speed when tapped with a riding mallet on different parts of their carapace;[1] riders may also use reins to help direct them.[4][7] When they are scared or confused, they tend to bury themselves in the sand with only their horns exposed.[6] Tapping the horns signals the tonk that it is safe to unbury itself.[1] Skilled riders such as Aarik may be able to prevent tonks from burying themselves when under duress.[7] Tonks are present in hunting camps in the deep sand, although terhan are preferred for hunts as they are both larger and faster than tonks.[7]

They are sometimes used by Darksiders that are visiting Dayside, but this may be rare, as Khrissalla and her team do not appear to be very familiar with their behavior.[4][6]


Tonks are considered part of the sandling family. They have a number of characteristics also seen in terhan and other sandling species, such as horns, water-soluble carapace, and a propensity to bury themselves in sand.[7] It is unknown if there is a relation, natural or bred, between the various sandling species.[8]


  • The name "tonk" is not related to the character Tonk Fah.[9]


This page is complete!
This page contains all the knowledge we have on the subject at this time.
Big Smooth (talk) 22:35, 25 August 2023 (UTC)