# Which plume is which?

One day, at the spirits' bathhouse you work at, you encounter 5 dragons, who have decided to share a bath. Due to the lighting you can only see what is above the water, that being 5 tails, and 4 heads (presumably, there is another head beneath the surface).

The 5 tails vary in appearance wildly: One has a single long feather, another is forked, with a pair of feathers side-by-side, another still has a soft fluffy base, the fourth has a feather tipped with a sharp point, and the final tail bears a feather with all the colours of a rainbow. The heads are equally diverse, with the visible heads bearing ornaments as varied as a cockscomb, boar tusks, impressive antlers, or just simple fur.

You need to know which tail belongs to which head, but it would seem rude and foolish to ask outright. At this point, your coworker decided to drop off a few riddles, presumably to help you along.

These riddles are:

• A long plume is often compensating for something
• Unwanted hair is rarely alone
• Some ungulates can act quite sharp
• Class differences can often fork a group
• The gilled head is a long way down

Using these riddles, work out which tail belongs to which head.

• @bobble You need to do a logical deduction on the riddles' answers Commented Jul 31, 2021 at 23:03

Summarising the information:

1. tails

• a single long feather
• forked, with a pair of feathers side-by-side
• a soft fluffy base
• a feather tipped with a sharp point
• a feather with all the colours of a rainbow

• cockscomb
• boar tusks
• impressive antlers
• simple fur
• gills

Some ungulates can act quite sharp

Antlered creatures such as deer are ungulates, so this presumably means the sharp-tailed creature is the one with antlers.

Unwanted hair is rarely alone

This indicates that hair comes together: the tail with the soft fluffy base belongs with the head of simple fur.

Boars are famously omnivorous, so this probably means the creature whose tail has all the colours of the rainbow is the one with boar tusks.

Class differences can often fork a group

This must refer to the creature with the forked tail; I'm not sure why, but "class differences" presumably indicates the cockscomb (it's either that or gills, it's all we've got left).

A long plume is often compensating for something

This refers to the tail with a single long feather, and maybe "compensating for something" suggests that the gilled head is the most boring.

The gilled head is a long way down

This "riddle" is just to tell us the nature of the fifth head.

• I wonder if the last two creatures are flipped as the gilled creature IS alone and in its own class (deep vs shallow)
– Amoz
Commented Aug 1, 2021 at 12:00
• @Amoz If we're getting into biological classes, both cocks (Aves) and gilled creatures (probably Osteichthyes) are separate from fur, antlers, etc. (Mammalia). Commented Aug 1, 2021 at 12:15
• Yes that ambiguity is why I wondered if they meant spatial class (location in pool) vs biological class.
– Amoz
Commented Aug 1, 2021 at 12:22
• The pointed, rainbow, and forked tails are right, but overall the reasoning isn't correct Commented Aug 1, 2021 at 13:25
• So @Ichthys King, what is the correct reasoning? Commented Aug 2, 2021 at 3:15