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Ministry of Magic Classification XX
Appearance eight inches high, bark-coloured, pixie-like, sharp fingers
Origin the west of England, southern Germany, some Scandinavian forests
First appearance in canon Detention with Dolores (OP)

Bowtruckles are magical creatures that live in trees that are usually used for wands. They dwell in western England, southern Germany and certain Scandinavian forests. They are pixie-like bark-coloured tree-guardians of about eight inches in height. They have knobbly arms and legs, two twiglike fingers on each hand and a barklike face with small beetle-brown eyes; a camouflage that makes them difficult to spot in their natural habitat. Even though they seem harmless, they have got really sharp fingers; many woodcutters often get injured. They feed on insects, especially woodlice and fairy and Doxy eggs (FBAZ, OP13, DH28). Bowtruckles are generally shy and peaceful, but they become aggressive when their tree is in danger. Woodcutters can distract them with an offering of woodlice (FBAZ, OP13).

Bowtruckles in Care of Magical Creatures

Bowtruckles belong to the group of creatures that most commonly show up on Care of Magical Creatures OWLs (OP13). Professor Grubbly-Plank therefore introduces them to her fifth-year Care of Magical Creatures class in their first lesson on Tuesday, September 2, 1995. She shows them a table seemingly laden with twigs and asks who knows what they are called. Predictably, Hermione Granger raises her hand and is mocked by Draco Malfoy for it. Pansy Parkinson breaks into a laugh that turns into a scream when the "twigs" leap into the air. Parvati Patil and Lavender Brown loudly admire them and Grubbly-Plank asks them to keep their voices down. She scatters wood-lice on the table and the creatures immediately start to eat. Hermione correctly identifies them as Bowtruckles and names their favourite food, earning ten points for Gryffindor. Grubbly-Plank holds a short lecture about Bowtruckles and orders the class to examine and draw them in groups of three.

While Hermione and Ron Weasley try to persuade their Bowtruckle to keep still, Harry Potter asks Grubbly-Plank where Hagrid is, but he receives no answer and is taunted by Malfoy. Grabbing the largest Bowtruckle, the Slytherin hints that Hagrid might have been "messing with stuff that's too big for him." Harry anxiously tells Hemione and Ron of Malfoy's remark while they make their drawings. They can overhear Malfoy saying that Hagrid will hopefully be sacked and Harry grips the Bowtruckle so tightly that is almost snaps and lashes at him with its sharp fingers, leaving two gashes on his hand. To the great amusement of Vincent Crabbe and Gregory Goyle, it then runs off towards into the Forbidden Forest and leaves Harry with a bloody and unfinished sketch.

Due to his string of detentions with Dolores Umbridge, Harry has no time to complete his homework. On Wednesday, September 3, he he has to devote his lunch hour to the drawing. Grubbly-Plank assigns more homework on Bowtruckles during class in the afternoon. Harry knocks up an essay on the proper treatment of Bowtruckles late that night (OP13).

The fifth-years are still studying Bowtruckles when Umbridge comes to inspect Grubbly-Planks teaching on September 10 (OP15).

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