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Author Topic: Why do some mammals lack fur?  (Read 1611 times)

Offline thedoc

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Why do some mammals lack fur?
« on: 16/01/2014 13:30:01 »
Kouroth asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Why some mammals lack fur?

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 16/01/2014 13:30:01 by _system »


 

Offline Kouroth

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Re: Why do some mammals lack fur?
« Reply #1 on: 26/01/2014 03:58:30 »
To expand on this, it seems like nearly all mammals noses are are fur free. Dogs, cats, deer, etc. Any idea why?
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: Why do some mammals lack fur?
« Reply #2 on: 26/01/2014 09:29:05 »
There are two ways to regulate heat in the skin.  Insulation (fur & fat), and blood flow. 

If the nose gets adequate blood flow, it should keep from freezing.  The inside of the nose should have adequate circulation to help warm even very cold air, and in fact aid with the warming of the air.  It wouldn't take much to assume the outside of the nose also gets good circulation. 

Steam icing up the fur on the nose would also be a pain.  Fur around the mouth and nose might also interfere with eating, and get dirty when eating. 

The face for human infants is considered critical for temperature regulation, and they should be swaddled with the face exposed and laid on their backs.

Warm climate animals such as an armadillo would not need fur insulation, but has other adaptations. 

Mostly aqueous animals such as a hippo, dolphin, or whale would also not need hair for insulation, although some animals such as otters do have hair, perhaps like a natural "wet suit".

Nude Rats & Nude Mice carry a genetic mutation also associated with a depressed immune system, and are useful in experiments, especially when inoculated with human tissue which would otherwise generate a strong rejection reaction.
« Last Edit: 26/01/2014 09:32:38 by CliffordK »
 

Offline RD

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Re: Why do some mammals lack fur?
« Reply #3 on: 26/01/2014 10:40:29 »
... it seems like nearly all mammals noses are are fur free. Dogs, cats, deer, etc. Any idea why?

Their noses are functioning as a touch-sensitive organ, so like the palms of our hands, they operate better without hair, although reindeer noses are furry, presumably insulation takes precedence ...


http://www.zmescience.com/science/biology/why-is-rudolphs-nose-red-science-explains-reindeer-432432423/

... aqueous animals ...

surely aquatic.

Nude Rats & Nude Mice carry a genetic mutation also associated with a depressed immune system, and are useful in experiments

There are naturally nude rodents ...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naked_mole_rat

They do have a few coarse hairs which are probably functioning as sensory whiskers , (given they live in darkness).
« Last Edit: 26/01/2014 11:22:33 by RD »
 

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Re: Why do some mammals lack fur?
« Reply #3 on: 26/01/2014 10:40:29 »

 

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