Country Living Series

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Life's little mysteries

On my "daily constitutional," I pass a tree by the side of the road, one of thousands. But last fall I noticed a pile of branches at the base of this tree, as if someone had trimmed and piled them there haphazardly.


Branches come down all the time in the forest, but not in such quantities -- or such order. These were piled only on one side of the tree, not scattered all around the base.

The big mystery? The branches were clearly snapped off from way up high.


They were definitely broken, not cut.



This is not a small tree. I'm guessing -- 70 feet tall?


The snapped-off branches are just on one side, from about 40 feet up. No other branches were damaged except this one spot.


It's like something very, very heavy was flung against the tree and snapped branches as it slid down. It wasn't lightning (thunderstorms are pretty rare around here) and to the best of my knowledge northern Idaho has no native roc populations (a mythical bird of prey capable of carrying off elephants).


We get fierce winds here, but this particular tree is locate in a dip where the wind isn't as bad.

So... I'm clueless. I have no idea how those branches were snapped off one particular spot on the tree and fell in a pile at the base. Just one of life's little mysteries, I guess.

32 comments:

  1. big chunk of snow built up and then fell through there maybe

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    1. Nope, because it happened last fall before the snow started. And we didn't have a particularly harsh winter, unlike the rest of the country.

      - Patrice

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  2. Guessing squirrels. This happens in MN to our trees.

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  3. I'm guessing squirrels. This happens to our pine trees in Minnesota.

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  4. Could a bear have gotten up there and been a bit clumsy?

    Fran

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  5. Overweight squirrels?
    Probably global warming though

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  6. mountain lions hanging out, waiting for prey to walk under the trees?

    Leslie in SD

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  7. Its them. . . from out there (go outside and look straight up).

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  8. Extreme high winds? Very strong wind does some strange stuff in my neck of the woods.

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  9. Sheep (from a very old Monty Python skit). ;-)

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  10. I worked for the forest service in northern Idaho for a couple summers and near one of the bunk houses I stayed in we had some trees like that, it was caused by bears climbing down the trees and slipping and breaking some branches, so could be that.

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  11. Squirrels? Those would have had to be BIG squirrels! I'm thinking it was probably a bear. Very possible it was trying to escape a hunter. (No shots heard? Could have been a bow hunter.) The bear might have been shot and then slid down the tree as it was dying. --Fred in AZ

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    1. That's what I was thinking; a bear sliding down.

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  13. Any chance that a neighbor removed it to clear a view, maybe for a telescope or such? Although..... there is always the possibility of bigfoot :) I hear they do make nests.

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    1. Sorry for the duplicate, not sure why it happened. Hmmmmm.

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  14. One word: Meteorite.

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  15. The branches may have broken due to some weather or fauna phenomenon. But the careful, systematic piling of those branches at the bottom of the tree seems to indicate human intervention.

    Very weird indeed.

    Just Me

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  16. Porcupine maybe - I see them up in trees a lot here. Many I see here in No. Maine are as large as a bear cub!

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  17. Its a Bigfoot nest! Well that or the branches have been attacked by some type of insect??

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  18. Seems a bit high for a hunter's tree stand, but that's my best guess. They could be stacked so that when he puts up his stand he can camouflage the ladder and anything he leaves on the ground.

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  19. Yep I agree with madmanny it was Bigfoot. So get ready for all the Bigfoot hunters to descend on you!

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  20. Did anyone look under the branches? Perhaps whatever fell landed first and the branches fell on top. yet that doesn't explain the neat placement of the branches. I was just curious what was under the pile. Is something being covered up on purpose? Strange indeed.

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  21. Is there a stump nearby? This looks almost exactly like a nearby tree came down and took out the limbs on that side. Did somebody possibly cut down and haul away or haul off a blowdown?

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  22. I was going to say some what facetiously: Bigfoot or Aliens. But others beat me to it! Definitely a mystery!

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  23. A drone test gone awry?

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  24. My guess is bear. We have may tree-climbing bear that scratch and delimb trees quite frequently... but that's in NH not in your "neck of the woods".

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