Hair whorl
A hair whorl is a patch of hair
Hair is a filamentous biomaterial, that grows from follicles found in the dermis. Found exclusively in mammals, hair is one of the defining characteristics of the mammalian class....

Growing may refer to:* Growth* Growing , a noise band currently based in Brooklyn, New York* Growing , a 2007 album by the instrumental rock band Sleeping People...

 in the opposite direction of the rest of the hair. Hair whorls occur in most hairy animals, on the body as well as on the head. Hair whorls, also known as crowns, swirls, trichoglyphs, or cowlicks, can be either clockwise or counterclockwise in direction of growth.

Hair whorls on the head (parietal
Parietal may refer to:*Parietal placentation*Parietal lobe of the brain*Parietal bone of the skull*Parietal scales of a snake lie in the general region of the parietal bone*Parietal cell in the stomach*Parietal pleura...

 whorls) have been studied by some behaviorists. Most people have clockwise scalp hair-whorls. Parietal whorls which are considered to be normal scalp patterns could be a single whorl or double whorls. Cases of triple parietal whorls are less common but do not necessarily indicate abnormality.

Amar J. Klar conducted research to see if there was a genetic link between handedness and hair-whorl direction. He found that 8.4% of right handed people and 45% of left handed people have counterclockwise hair-whorls. His research indicates that a single gene may control both handedness and hair-whorl direction.

Animal behavioral theories

There are many (mostly apocryphal) theories concerning horse behavior and their hair whorls.

One paper has suggested that abnormal hair whorls can be used as to assess the likelihood of agitated behavior or temperament
In psychology, temperament refers to those aspects of an individual's personality, such as introversion or extroversion, that are often regarded as innate rather than learned...

 in cattle
Cattle are the most common type of large domesticated ungulates. They are a prominent modern member of the subfamily Bovinae, are the most widespread species of the genus Bos, and are most commonly classified collectively as Bos primigenius...

in the auction ring.
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