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Natural selection. Imagine the hamster's earlier ancestors as having tails. Imagine a group of them moving into a new environment where having a tail might no longer be beneficial. The proto-hamsters do not require it for heat exchange any more, nor do they require it for balance. So since a tail requires energy to grow, it means a shorter tail is an advantage, the proto-hamsters with shorter tails become the ones slightly more likely to breed and pass on those short tail genes.

Over many years, the hamster has become what we know it as today. The useless tail has degenerated into a useless stump, small enough that the energy used to grow it does not have any effect on an individual hamster's survival. This is why useless or 'vestigial' body parts don't disappear altogether.

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Q: Why do hamsters only have stubs for tails?
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Related questions

I bought a white mouse but you dont know if its a mouse or hamster It has 2cm pink tail and red eyes and it has bit fur what is it?

Mice are smaller than hamsters and they have long pointed tails, but hamsters have short tails (stubs). gerbils also have tails like mice but aren't as small. I think you have a hamster because the tail is short.

Do all dogs have tails or are they cropped?

no they dont some dogs have little stubs as tails

Do Chinese hamsters have tails?

Yes they have tails like a mouse.

Do hamsters lose their tails?

this is hard to awncer! i dont think so .....hamsters i had didnt loose their tale.....unfortunetaly some hamsters may loose their tale in a figh but that dosent happen any ofenn...i hope i helped ;)

Are hamster tails short or long?

They have short tails that hide in their fur.

Do hamsters have long tales?

no, hamsters tails are quite small and sometimes difficult to see.

My hamster has a hairless tail is this bad?

No, many hamsters have hairless tails or tails with very light hairs on their tails

How would you know if a pet store sold you a rat instead of a hamster?

I thought everyone would know this, but, Rats have long, furless tails where as hamsters have tiny little furry stubs. Here, this is an awesome site to learn all about hamsters: Sorry the site disabled the link, just type it in the address bar.

Do hamsters have long tails?

Yes. One species of hamster does have a 'long' tail. The Chinese hamster (often mislabelled the Chinese Dwarf hamster) has a tail that measures roughly 1inch, although this doesn't seem that long, it is when compared to other hamster species. All other hamsters have short tails - the length depending on what species they are. (eg Syrian, Russian Campbell's dwarf, Winter white dwarf or roborovski dwarf).

How are hamsters and guinea pigs alike?

They are both rodents, they both have the same features like whiskers, a small tail etc Some people think guinea pigs have little tails, just like hamsters, and that that is one of their alikenesses. But, hamsters are the ones with little stubs of tails on their rear ends, while guinea pigs have no tail period! But, it is very confusing, because guinea pigs are the ONLY rodents without tails, so that mistake is very understandible. Though there are countless differences to how they are different, there are only a few that make them alike. For example, they are both members of the rodent family, they have 4 paws, 4 teeth, 2 on the bottom and 2 on the top. Most of the differences are some of the basics, like they have 2 eyes and a nose, and whiskers, etc. etc.

What is the different between Chinese dwarf hamster and other dwarf hamster?

Chinese hamsters have tails and dwarf hamsters don't and Chinese hamsters can live together.

Do winter white hamsters have big butts?

no they are born without tails