A vampirous, hive-based species that harvest on the life-force of other beings for nourishment through suckers on their palms. Countless worlds in the Pegasus Galaxy live in constant fear of the Wraith, who return periodically to cull their human herds. The Ancients first encountered the Wraith many thousands of years ago. At that time, the Ancients had established a vast network of Stargates with thousands of worlds in the Pegasus Galaxy, which they seeded with human life. They had never before encountered a race with technology that rivaled their own, until they met the Wraith.
Once awoken, the Wraith fed upon the people on these worlds--until the city of Atlantis was all that remained untouched. The Wraith attacked Atlantis with their powerful weapons, but the Ancients' shield held. Defeated, the Ancients decided to submerge the city and leave through the Stargate to Earth.
The Wraith have a frighteningly efficient regenerative mechanism in their genetic makeup, allowing their bodies to heal themselves. Even bullet holes quickly seal themselves like evaporating water. Their regenerative abilities are so powerful that it is unlikely that the Wraith ever die from natural causes the way that humans do. The species also has advanced telepathic abilities: they can force their prey to see things that are not there, and can use their mental powers to forcefully interrogate humans.
The Wraith as a collective species go through long hibernation cycles, sometimes lasting centuries. Their massive hive ships contain untold numbers of hibernation pods. During this time only a small number of them move about, enough to keep their victim worlds on edge. The sleeping masses are watched over by the Keeper, one Wraith designated with their care whose death would signal their premature awakening -- as it did when one was killed by Major John Sheppard.
The Keeper interrogated Colonel Marshall Sumner and learned that a plentiful feeding ground -- Earth -- exists elsewhere in the universe, but she was unable to determine where. Upon her death, the entire hive reawakened. Now that the species is moving, feeding on planets throughout the Pegasus Galaxy, no one is safe.
The Wraith use stun weapons to incapacitate their prey, so that they can feed on their victims later. Their ships include the hive ships, which can land on planets during an extended hibernation cycle, and Wraith Darts -- small, fast-moving ships capable of travelling through Stargates and equipped with culling beams for transporting their prey aboard
A Wraith soldier in armour
The thing in their hands that enables them to take the life from humans
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