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Version 0.13: This article may not be up to date for the latest stable release of Crawl.
harpy HHarpy.png
HP 26-52
HD 7
XP 624
Speed 25
AC 2
EV 10
MR 28
Attack1 19 (claw: plain)
Attack2 14 (claw:

steal food)

Type of Meat Contaminated
Resistances rPois+
Vulnerabilities None
Habitat Land
Intelligence Normal
Uses Uses nothing
Holiness Natural
Size Medium
Type harpy, harpy
Harpies have roamed the coasts as long as seafarers can remember. They strike fear in the hearts of all sentient beings, but not for their claws. It is their way to devour the food of the unwary, causing many a man to starve to death.

“Bird-bodied, girl-faced things they are; abominable their droppings, their hands are talons, their faces haggard with hunger insatiable.”
-Virgil, Aeneid 3

“And Phineus had scarcely taken the first morsel up when, with as little warning as a whirlwind or a lightning flash, they dropped from the clouds proclaiming their desire for food with raucous cries. The young lords saw them coming and raised the alarm. Yet they had hardly done so before the Harpyiai had devoured the whole meal and were on the wing once more, far out at sea. All they left was an intolerable stench.”
-Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 2. 179 - 43

Useful Info

Harpies are one of the game's more obnoxious monsters. They appear in packs, flying around in the same chaotic way bats do, and their attacks can deal significant damage and occasionally destroy your food supplies. These food attacks affect any food in your inventory or on the ground you're standing on, and conservation does not help. When they swarm, they can deal heavy damage to all but the heaviest armoured characters, and they pose a risk of starvation to anyone. They are most often found in the Shoals, but can sometimes appear in the Dungeon and the Vaults.

Tips & Tricks

  • To avoid an embarrassing death, eat yourself up to engorged and drop off any excess food you're carrying just outside of the Shoals. It's not so long a branch that you're putting yourself in harm's way, and you can always head back up for a snack if nothing edible leaves a corpse.
  • Alternatively, if you have any potions of porridge, those are immune to harpy attack (but not to the cold attacks of merfolk aquamancers).
  • Attacks that affect multiple targets at once are a good idea against harpies, but they resist poison, so Mephitic Cloud and Poisonous Cloud are not options. Fireball works just fine, however, as do enchantment spells such as Confusion and Enslavement. Petrifying harpies over deep water is instantly lethal, and a couple shots of Airstrike will take out any individual.
  • Be very careful around undead harpies: they lose the batty flag, changing them from hard-to-hit pests into something more akin to a nerfed Executioner. Luckily undead harpies are fairly rare, but be wary of killing harpies around casters with Animate Dead. Also note that harpy simulacra can have horrifying damage output, though thankfully they are much rarer than skeletons or zombies.


In 0.14 harpies will no longer steal food nor eat it off the ground. The player will be able to summon friendly harpies with the spell Monstrous Menagerie.