Keratin

What is keratin?

Keratin is a strong, fibre-based protein material.

Keratin is found on amphibians, birds, mammals, and reptiles.

Keratin is the material in animal beaks, bills, claws, feathers, fingernails, hair, hooves, horns, scales, shells, talons, toenails, and wool. It is also in the outer layer of human skin.

Keratin comes from the Greek word “keras” or “ceros” which means horn. Rhinoceros means “nose with a horn” for example.

Ostrich

Ostrich beak

Feather

Shetland Pony

Shetland Pony hair

Pied Crow claws

Impala

Impala horns

Tortoise

Tortoise shell

Monkey

Monkey fingernails

Zebra

Zebra hooves

Black Vulture

Black Vulture talons

 

 

Photographer: Martina Nicolls

Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM

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