Bovril is a perspicacious loris, a fabricated creature who was hatched from one of Dr. Barlow's eggs. Because it hatched while Alek was in the machine room, it has a natal fixation with Alek and is bonded to him. Lilit provided Bovril with its unusual name as "she thought he ought to have an English name" and "bovril was the only English thing she liked."
In the series
Bovril first appears when it hatches in the machine room of the Leviathan. Alek brings it to Istanbul with him when he escapes. Volger wants to strangle Bovril, but Alek insist that Bovril come with them. Alek keeps Bovril in a birdcage when they first arrive in Istanbul. Lilit and Nene start to believe that Alek really is from the Leviathan when they hear Bovril talk.
Bovril shows a growing attachment to Deryn by the end of Behemoth, despite Dr. Barlow's insistence that it should only bond with one person. Bovril later seems to hint at Deryn's "gender secret" after supposing that it is Alek and Deryn's close relationship that causes Bovril to grow closer to Deryn as well as Alek. Dr. Barlow also explains that Bovril will play a crucial role in the future, which is why she had it bond with Alek.
Bovril has soft, pale fur, with darker spots on his hindquarters, and large "wizened" eyes which make it appear knowing but innocent. Even people who do not normally like fabricated beasts will trust Bovril because its appearance of goodness, such as Lilit, Nene, Bauer and Klopp. However, Count Volger seems immune to Bovril, and tries to convince Alek to strangle Bovril or throw Bovril off of the Leviathan soon after it hatches.
Like any perspicacious loris, Bovril repeats random words and parts of conversations which may be important to its owner, Alek. Bovril enjoys chuckling for no apparent reason, eating strawberries, and saying "Mr. Sharp." After Bovril gets back on the Leviathan, it learns to whistle commands for the creatures on the airship, and often turns on the glowworm lights for Alek and Deryn. As the story progresses, Bovril- as well as its loris counterpart- learns to speak even better than before, able to actually not only repeat things, but also speak coherently and in complete phrases.