a developing theory

Driving along country highways I often notice scenes like this:

There are miles and miles of these views – pastures lined with trees, gathering spots for cows to pass the days away.

But look closer:


Now do you notice the way the tree limbs end in a straight line? There are several different varieties and ages of trees, but their lower limbs all end along the same horizontal plane.

Look closer still:


I couldn’t help but wonder what caused this phenomenon, not just in this field, but in dozens of pastures along my route.

So I thought and I pondered, and here’s my theory:  the cows nibble the leaves as high as they can. And where they can reach no farther, well, that’s the line we see along the trees.

Any other ideas?



3 thoughts on “a developing theory

  1. I think your idea is spot-on! I have to admit, I never would have thought of it, but maybe that’s because I haven’t looked closely enough in the past. That will change tomorrow.

  2. Okay – you’ve given me a mission for my ride into work tomorrow. I’m going to check out the tree line in the pastures I pass. Of course, most of our trees are evergreens and I really don’t think the cows – or the deer – like to nibble on them. But …I am going to look, really look…

  3. elsie says:

    Now that’s what I call being observant! You may be right. I certainly can’t think of another reason.

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