Grasslands

The Dance of the Deer and the Pines

Oyama

Not only is every ponderosa pine here a vertical column, rather than a star of branches as it appears to human eyes, and not only does it create a zone under its branches that differs in water harvest and temperature from the surrounding soil, but as a grove (herd?) the trees are able to complete change deer migration patterns as well. The deer normally make the tracks that cut across the slopes at 30-40 degrees. If you look closely, you’ll see them cutting across the slope. Here, though, they go vertically as well. The trees have done that. All three effects are at play at the same time. Look how the deer have been seeking out the snowless places under the trees. They too are actors in this dance. What a choreography!

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