The combstrainers have evolved from a group of stickyball lickers. These peckerplents have readapted straighter wings, allowing for a faster flight speed. Their tail has grown slightly as well, but seems to serve no other purpose other than aesthetics.
Although their long beak-mouths are ungainly, it is perfect for filtering out microorganisms, which the combstrainer feeds off of. Their filter is built out of hundreds of small teeth-like thorns. Their feet are also somewhat elongated from those of the stickyball lickers, which allows them to wade a very tiny bit deeper for when they feed. These jaws are long and slim, taking up nearly twice their total body length. The jaws together curve like a bow. The upper jaw has much shorter, blunt thorn-teeth that naturally comb through the filter and into the mouth.
Unlike their predecessors, the combstrainer possesses a commensal relationship with their host species, the sailbacked bearhog plents, which they return to at when at rest, using their sucker-feet to attach to its sides. In this relationship, the combstrainer gains the protection of the much larger sailback bearhogs, while the bearhogs themselves suffers no serious disadvantage, but also gains no advantages. Although they essentially 'live' on these large plents, they are rarely found more than 25 miles from the Slarti River.
Although the combstrainers spend much of their resting time on these large plents during the year, they leave their hosts during mating season; at these times, the males make nests out of violetgrass within the savanna, where they try to attract mates. Their major way to attract a female is to open their jaws and slowly rake their fine comb-thorns against the violetgrass leaves, to make a strange, quiet "tick-tick-tick" sound; this has to be quiet, due to how susceptible they are to being killed.