We are always drawn to look at things that do not fit the norm. By being different from what is considered usual, these creatures attract attention and interest from people and beings around them. In the animal and bird world, this could be due to some of them having feathers or hair that is longer than others. Or it could be that the hair or feathers are at an unusual place or growing in ways that is not normal. Here are some examples where people, animals and others have more hair than what is considered the normal standards. Sometimes the reason the way they are is easy enough to understand and sometimes the lack of reason can leave us mystified.
A gazelle with unusual hair:
This was an antelope that was clicked by Paolo Torchio when she caught his eye due to her extremely hairy coat. The young female gazelle was seen in Masai Mara National Reserve that is in Kenya. It so happened that the same animal was clicked again in the year 2010 by Robert Bernsten. Though the actual reason for the way she looks has not be identified, there is speculation that the condition of hypertrichosis or having too much hair could be a symptom of Cushings disease.
Many species of domestic animals may have long hair naturally. These may be continued selectively as angora breeds. In some cases these breeds have been seen for such a long time that we tend to overlook the fact that these species were originally not like that. Some of the examples in this realm include gerbils, cats, mice and teddy bear hamsters.
Some species of birds like parakeets and budgerigars give birth to birds whose feathers may be really curly, long and growing quite consistently. These are called feather duster due to this very reason and could occur due to a gene that has been lying dormant for some time but sometimes getting activated. This could cause the control of feathers growing to be deactivated. Some people are of the opinion that such birds should be put to sleep as their feather growth may hinder their normal activities. Some feel that this characteristic shortens the life span of the bird but in any case most people agree that this trait should not be deliberately bred.
The Phoenix Rooster:
Certain types of chicken are grown for the tail feathers they have which are pretty long. The Onagadori and the Japanese Yokohoma chickens are also related to the European Phoenix rooster.
In dogs you will find there are only three genes that work towards controlling the length of hair in all the breeds.
The growing of hair on the face or Hypertrichosis has been seen and found in Gibbons.
In these also you will find many with long hair. The ones with short hair are called American and the ones with the longer hair are referred to as Sheltie and Peruvian.
In older horses when the coat tends to over grown this could be due to hyperadrenocorticism otherwise known as Cushings disease or due to other reasons like the normal function of the pituitary glands being disrupted. Some times excess growth of hair is seen in horses where they are affected by some types of cancer like Lymphoma where the pituitary gland functioning is affected.
Some horses that are normal physically and gene wise can also have really long manes, some even reaching the floor or even longer than that. There have been horses observed with really long tails and manes that have been spotted in Circuses like the Oregon horses shown in the name of Linus. The Linus has been dated back to the year 1884 and was brought by the Eaton brothers as an animal for their sideshow. The longer hair can be attributed to the genealogy dating back to wild horses or Cyldesdales from the Oregon area. Linus was exhibited as Linus 2 after the first one died after being stricken by lightning. Another horse that had a long tail and mane was seen in the year 1890 and had the name White Wings. Currently a horse named Summer has the record for being the horse with the longest tail. It is an cute mix of black and white and has a tail that is 12 feet and 6 inches long.
Among animals you can see good hair growth in Alpaca. Even sheep if not shorn for a longer period of time can have a lot of fleece like Shrek which is a Merino.