sharing our knowledge.
Photographic gallery.  Thousands of particles under the microscope.

\Hair

Mammalian hair is composed of a protein, keratin. It is the same protein that makes horn, fingernails, claws, skin epithelium, and dander. Mammalian hair consists of three distinct morphological units, the cuticle, the cortex and the medulla. In addition to these units pigment bodies and other inclusions can help distinguish one hair type from another. A brief illustrated glossary of terms is presented below to aid in the interpretation of structure accompanying the individual photographs. These terms are largely taken from L. A. Hausman

Cuticle Scale Patterns
Medulla Patterns

A set of reference material is provided at the bottom of this file.



Alpaca Hair Alpaca Hair Alpaca Hair Cross-Section

Alpaca Cuticle Cast Alpaca Cuticle Cast Alpaca Cuticle Cast Alpaca Cuticle Cast Pronghorn Hair Pronghorn Hair Pronghorn Hair Pronghorn Hair Pronghorn Hair Pronghorn Hair Pronghorn Hair Pronghorn Hair Armadillo Hair Armadillo Hair Armadillo Hair Armadillo Hair Bat Hair Bat Hair Bat Hair Bat Hair Bat Hair Bat Hair Bat Hair Bat Hair Bat Debris Bat Debris Bat Debris Bat Debris Bat Debris Bat Debris

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Artiodactyla FAMILY: Bovidae SUBFAMILY: Bovinae TRIBE: Bovini GENUS: Bison SPECIES: bison

White Buffalo

Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Bison Hair Brown Bear Hair, Medulla Brown Bear Hair, Medulla Brown Bear Hair, Scale Brown Bear Hair, Medulla Brown Bear Hair, Medulla Brown Bear Hair, SCale Brown Bear Hair, Scale

\Beaver Hair

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Rodentia FAMILY: Castoridae GENUS: Castor SPECIES: canadensis

Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Beaver Hair Camel Hair Camel Hair Camel Hair Cross-Section Caribou Hair Caribou Hair

Tabby Cat

Cat42 400Xa Cat-Tabby 1e Near End Cat-Tabby 1a Near Root Cat-Tabby 1b Mid Shaft Cat-Tabby 1d Medula Structure
Cat-Tabby 2b Fleece Near End Cat-Tabby 2a Fleece

Siamese Cat

Cat-Siamese Cropped Cat-Siamese 400X Main Shaft Chinchilla Hair Chinchilla Hair Chinchilla Hair Chinchilla Hair Chinchilla Hair Chinchilla Hair Chinchilla Hair Chinchilla Hair

\Chipmunk Hair

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Rodentia SUBORDER: Sciuromorpha FAMILY: Sciuridae TRIBE: Marmotini SUBTRIBE: Tamiina GENUS: Tamias

Chipmunk Hair Chipmunk Hair Chipmunk Hair Chipmunk Hair Ring-tailed or American Civit Cat Hair Ring-tailed or American Civit Cat Hair Ring-tailed or American Civit Cat Hair Ring-tailed or American Civit Cat Hair Ring-tailed or American Civit Cat Hair Ring-tailed or American Civit Cat Hair Ring-tailed or American Civit Cat Hair Cow Hair Cow Hair Cow Hair Cow Hair Cow Hair Deer Hair Deer Hair Deer Hair Deer Hair Deer Hair Deer Hair Deer Hair

Terrior (Canis lupus familiaris, variety: Terrior)

Black Terrior Scale 400x Terrior Fleece Scale Pattern 400x Terrior Fleece Scale Pattern 400x1 Terrior Scale Pattern 400x

Dog Standard

Dog43 400X1 Scale Dog Hair Near Root End

Poodle (Canis lupus familiaris, variety: Poodle)

Dog Poodle 400X1 Dog Poodle 400X2 Dog Poodle 400X3 Dog Poodle 400X4 Guard Dog Poodle Cropped

Silver Fox (Vulpes vulpes)

Silver Fox Guard Hair Near Mid-Shaft Silver Fox Guard Hair Near Mid-Shaft Silver Fox Guard Hair Near Root End Silver Fox Guard Hair Near Root End

Timber Wolf (Canis lupus)

Timber Wolf Guard Hair Main Body Ferret Hair Ferret Hair Ferret Hair Ferret Hair Elk Hair Elk Hair Elk Hair Elk Hair Elk Hair

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Carnivora FAMILY: Mustelidae SUBFAMILY: Mustelinae GENUS: Mustela SPECIES: putorius

Ferret Hair Ferret Hair Ferret Hair Ferret Hair

Click here for more information about Ferrets.

Cashmere Goat

Cashmere Goat Hair

Common Goat

Common Goat Hair Common Goat Hair Common Goat Hair Common Goat Hair

Mohair (Angora Goat)

Mohair, Angora Goat Hair Mohair Mohair

Mohair Cast of Cuticle Mohair Cast of Cuticle Guinea Pig +200X Mid Shaft2 Guinea Pig +200X Fleece Guinea Pig +200X Guard Hair GuineaPig +200X Mid Shaft Guinea Pig +200X Near Tip

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia SUBCLASS: Theria INFRACLASS: Eutheria ORDER: Perissodactyla FAMILY: Equidae GENUS: Equus SPECIES: ferus



Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Scale Pattern Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Scale Pattern Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Scale Pattern Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Horse Hair Scale Pattern

Click here for more information about Horses.

White, Straight Scale Pattern White, Straight White, Straight White, Straight White, Straight White, Straight White, Straight Split End and Cut End Split Ends Split Ends


Arm Hair

Arm Hair


Eyebrow Hair

Eyebrow Hair Cast Eyebrow Hair Cast


Whisker

Whisker Whisker Whisker


Carpet Beetle Grazed Hair

Human Hair Grazed by Carpet Beetles Llama Hair Llama Hair Llama Hair

Llama Hair Cast Mammoth Hair Mammoth Hair Mammoth Hair Mammoth Hair Mammoth Hair Mink Hair Mink Hair Mink Hair Mink Hair Scale Cast Mink Hair Near Root Scale Cast Mink Hair Closer To Tip Mink Hair Closer To Tip Mink Hair Closer To Tip Mink Hair Cast Closer To Tip Mink Hair Cast Closer To Tip Mink33 400X Near Root Medula Mink33 400X Near Root Scale Mink Cropped Monkey Hair Monkey Hair Monkey Hair Moose Guard Hair Scale Cast Moose Guard Hair Scale Cast Moose Hair Moose Hair Moose Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Hair Mouse Guard Hair Scale Cast Mouse Guard Hair Main Shaft Mouse Fleese

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Rodentia SUPERFAMILY: Muroidea FAMILY: Cricetidae SUBFAMILY: Arvicolinae GENUS: Ondatra SPECIES: zibethicus

Muskrat Hair, Fleece Muskrat Hair, Fleece Muskrat Hair, Fleece Muskrat Hair, Fleece Scale Cast Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Muskrat Guard Hair Scale Cast Muskrat Guard Hair Scale Cast

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia INFRACLASS: Marsupialia ORDER: Didelphimorphia FAMILY: Didelphidae GENUS: Didelphis SPECIES: virginiana



Opossum Hair Opossum Hair Opossum Hair Opossum Hair Opossum Hair Opossum Hair

Click here for more information about Opossum.

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Carnivora FAMILY: Mustelidae SUBFAMILY: Lutrinae GENUS: Lontra SPECIES: canadensis

Otter Hair Otter Hair Otter Hair Domestic Rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus)

Rabbit Fleese Hair Rabbit Fleese Hair Rabbit Hair Rabbit Hair

Angora (Oryctolagus cuniculus, variety: Angora)

Angora Hair Angora Hair Angora Hair Cross-Section

KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Carnivora FAMILY: Procyonidae GENUS: Procyon SPECIES: lotor



Fleece Hair

HairRacFl2DorsalMid HairRacFlDorsalMid HairRacFl2DorsalProx HairRacFl2DorsalProx2 HairRacFl2DorsalTip HairRacFlDorsalTip HairRacFlDorsalProx HairRacFleeceCastMid HairRacFleeceCastMid1 HairRacFleeceCastMid2 HairRacGrdFlCastMid

Guard Hair

HairRacGuardDorsalTip HairRacGuardDorsalProx HairRacGuardDorsalProx HairRacGuardDorsalProx HairRacGuardDorsalMid HairRacGuardDorsalMid HairRacGuardCastMid HairRacGuardCastProx Rat Hair Rat Fleese Hair Rat Fleese Hair Rat Fleese Hair Rat Fleese Hair Rat Fleese Hair
Rat Guard 400X Main Shaft Scale Rat Guard 400X Near Root Rat Guard 400X Near Tip Rat Fleese 400X Main Shaft Rat Guard 400X Main Shaft Rat Guard Cropped Rat Hair Rat Hair Merino

Merino Wool

Mouton Lamb

Mouton Lamb Wool Mouton Lamb Wool

Persian Lamb

Persian Lamb Wool Persian Lamb Wool Persian Lamb Wool

"Wool"

Wool Wool Wool Wool Wool

Wool Cuticle Wool Cuticle Skunk Hair KINGDOM: Animalia PHYLUM: Chordata CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Carnivora SUBORDER: Pinnipedia FAMILY: Phocidae GENUS: Phoca SPECIES: vitulina

Seal Hair Seal Hair Seal Hair Seal Hair Seal Hair Near Root Seal Hair Near Mid-Length Seal Hair at Termination
Seal Hair Near Root Seal Hair Near Mid-Length Seal Hair at Termination Red Squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus)
squirrel Hair Squirrel Hair Squirrel Hair Yak Hair Yak Hair Yak Hair Cross-Section Human Hair Grazed by Carpet Beetles Bacterial Decomposition of Hair

References:

References with Photographs and/or Drawings

Click here for the Florida State University "Hair" site.

Hausman, Leon Augustus, "Structural charactreistics of the hair of mammals", THE AMERICAN NATURALIST, vol. 54, no. 635, pp.496-523,

Hausman, Leon Augustus, "Recent studies of hair structure relationships", THE SCIENTIFIC MONTHLY, pp. 258-277,

Glaister, John, A STUDY OF HAIRS AND WOOLS, Misr Press, Cairo, 1931.

Click here for the FBI site for Animal Hair Identification.

Keys Only

Mayer, William V., "The hair of California mammals with keys to the dorsal guard hairs of California mammals", THE AMERICAN MIDLAND NATURALIST, vol. 48, no. 2, pp. 480-512, 1952.

Stains, Howard J., "Field key to guard hair of middle western furbearers", JOURNAL OF WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT, vol. 22, no.1, pp. 95-97, January, 1958.

Mathiak, Harold A., "A key to hairs of the mammals of southern Michigan", JOURNAL OF WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT, vol. 2, no. 4, pp. 251-268, October, 1938.