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Last Updated: Tuesday May 11 2010 11:52 GMT

In pics: A hairy solution to US oil spill

Helicopter

Helicopters dropping sand are just one of the ways scientists are trying to stop the oil spill spreading off the coast of America in Louisiana.

boat with boom

An oil rig exploded on 20 April and so far experts have been trying lots of different ways to keep the oil from reaching land.

hair on table

A much less glamorous, fluffy way to mop up the oil is now being tried...

Hair bags

Hair and fur is being collected from around the world in a new attempt to stop the oil spill.

Hair stocking

Hair and fur are great at absorbing oil. Once the hair has been sent it volunteers stuff it into old pairs of tights.

Hairy sausages

Volunteers in Louisiana have been collecting have and fur donations to make hairy booms. Sheep farmers have also been sending in their spare wool.

Hairy sausages

After the tights are filled they become 'hair sausages' or booms. These will then be out on to the beaches to soak up any oil that is washed up.

Hairy sausages

Over 200,000kg of hair has been arriving at the warehouse each day. That's the same as 32 fully grown elephants!