The stress relaxation behavior of natural rubber (NR) and its composites reinforced with short coir fibers under tension was analyzed. The rate of stress relaxation was a measure of the increase in the entropy of the compounds: the higher the rate was, the greater the entropy was. At lower strain levels, the relaxation mechanism of NR was independent of strain level. However, the rate of relaxation increased with the strain level. Also, the strain level influenced the rate of stress relaxation considerably in the coirreinforced NR composites. However, the relaxation mechanisms of both the unfilled compound and the composite were influenced by the strain rate. The rate of relaxation was influenced by fiber loading and fiber orientation. From the rate of stress relaxation, we found that fiber-rubber adhesion was best in the composite containing fibers subjected to a chemical treatment with alkali, toluene diisocyanate, and NR solutions along with a hexaresorcinol system as a bonding agent. In this study, the stress relaxation curves could not be viewed as segments with varying slopes; however, a multitude of inflection points were observed on the curves. Hence, we propose neither a two-step nor three-step mechanism for the coir-fiber-reinforced NR composites as reported for some other systems. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.