Animal Diaries Archive
Hairy, hairy elephants!
25 August 2006
From a distance, elephants seem to be bald, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. When elephants are born, hair is very thick and dense over all their body, and this does thin out as they get older. However, they will always have a covering of hair and the amount can vary from individual to individual.
And elephant's hair serves some very important purposes. The main one is the ability to "feel" with it. Every single hair can alert an elephant to something it comes into contact with, even something as small as an insect! This hair also allows dirt and mud to stick better to their bodies, which forms a great sunscreen and insect repellent. They have particulary long hair around their ears and eyes, which assists in keeping dirt and mud out.