In the animated television series Gargoyles and the spinoff comic books Gargoyles and Gargoyles: Bad Guys, gargoyles are a species of winged humanoid/reptilian creatures that are the main focus of the show.
Several clans of gargoyles exist worldwide (although until recently, they were unaware of each others' existence), and each clan has distinct cultural and morphological characteristics. All gargoyle clans are alike in that each has a particular item, area, or concept that they strive to protect. They are fierce warriors and are incredibly powerful and resilient; their appearance and ferocity (along with the fact that they are nocturnal creatures) often means that humans vilify them as demons and monsters. Most of the world's gargoyle clans do not peacefully co-exist with humans.
Gargoyles are particularly notable for entering a sort of stone hibernation, called "stone sleep", during the day, during which they resemble gothic statues. During daylight, they can quickly heal from injury and illness, and are protected from most natural threats. However, this state makes them easy targets for destruction by their enemies and humans who hate them. The character Anton Sevarius postulated that, in this hibernation, they absorb solar radiation that allows them to store energy; otherwise, he concluded, a gargoyle's strenuous activity would require an nutritional intake equivalent to eating three cows a day. Damage during stone sleep can be fatal to a gargoyle. If a gargoyle dies during its hibernation, its body will remain stone.
Gargoyles, despite having large wings, cannot fly, but glide on updrafts and on the wind. They have sharp claws that can dig into any kind of solid surface, and they can use this to climb vertical surfaces. They are also excellent swimmers.
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