The next time you're out walking through the forest, take a moment to look above you at the beautiful trees, and you might be pleasantly surprised by what you find.

Check out these nature photography shots to see what we mean. The naturally occurring phenomenon is called "crown shyness" because the uppermost branches of certain tree species don't like to touch one another. The intriguing behavior was first observed in the 1920s, and various hypotheses have been presented since then in an attempt to explain it. Some believe it occurs to reduce the spread of harmful insects. Others believe that trees are attempting to protect one another's branches from getting cracked and broken in the wind, and it's also been suggested that "crown shyness" happens so that trees can optimize light exposure to maximize the process of photosynthesis which is done by the tree leaves. Despite these various theories, however, nobody knows for sure why this phenomenon occurs, but it serves to remind us of just how beautiful nature can be. Scroll down for some of our favorite pictures, and don't forget to vote for the best. (h/t: colossal)

#1

Crown Shyness Trees

Tom Cowey Report

Jim Gardner 1 year ago

Looks almost like a map of part of the world with land and rivers

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#2

Crown Shyness Trees

ThatsJustYourOpinionMan Report

1 year ago

this one is Amazing!!

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#3

Crown Shyness Trees

sciencehalimah Report

GalaxyInAJar 1 year ago

These are all so beautiful!

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#4

Crown Shyness Trees

unknown Report

Uni N 1 year ago

well i should look up more ^-^

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#5

Crown Shyness Trees

Dag Peak Report

Hope Floats 1 year ago

It looks like lightening through the trees.

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#6

Crown Shyness Trees

zackzayne Report

CelSlade 1 year ago

This one looks almost like neurons

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#7

Crown Shyness Trees

Report

Ok Ha-Neul 1 year ago

me in public places : don't touch me don't touch me please don't touch me eunghhhh

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#8

Crown Shyness Trees

Ali Reza Zamli Report

Kalene Ivey 1 year ago

Resembles the forest floor. Mind boggling!

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#9

Crown Shyness Trees

ThatsJustYourOpinionMan Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

I really like this one it's geometrical

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#10

Crown Shyness Trees

johdahn Report

Marzo Florida 1 year ago

When I first looked at it, my eyes thought that the camera was in the tree looking down at cracks in a path :)

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#11

Crown Shyness Trees

airwii Report

Jimena Mel 1 year ago

I think this is one tree

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#12

Crown Shyness Trees

Patrice78500 Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

Stunning

#13

Crown Shyness Trees

Bong & Lilian Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

With the one huge tree trunk front and center it is magnificent

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#14

Crown Shyness Trees

sinikuusisto Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

This is seriously a wonderfull example of creation

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#15

Crown Shyness Trees

paloma.la.chingona Report

Lynne Donovan 1 year ago

Looking down on a gentle snowfall! Amazing!

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#16

Crown Shyness Trees

lavanyaprakash Report

Sara MacFarland 1 year ago

Ain't Mother Nature a wonder?

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#17

Crown Shyness Trees

busy.doingnothing Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

Wow, the the tree trunk in the front being the vocale point, astounding

#18

Crown Shyness Trees

arbenedetti Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

Love the trees and the beautiful blue sky background

#19

Crown Shyness Trees

jeelsays Report

Sara MacFarland 1 year ago

astonishing phenom!

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#20

Crown Shyness Trees

Mr. Sylvester Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

This sort of looks like one before with the square leaves

#21

Crown Shyness Trees

Mikenorton Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

The picture is the most beautiful

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#22

Crown Shyness Trees

Ayie Ramli Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

Such closeness and the sun peeking through, grand

#23

Crown Shyness Trees

lostfredde Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

There is one of the trees that looks like a dog looking over his left shoulder.

#24

Crown Shyness Trees

lailysujak Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

The trunk in the forefront and the rest of the out of sight

#25

Crown Shyness Trees

afaizah Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

Again, very symetric

#26

Crown Shyness Trees

mukanD2007 Report

Linda Brown 1 year ago

Again beautiful, there looks like a turtle in the center

#27

Crown Shyness Trees

Ensphinxed Report

Mark Walker 1 year ago

no pictures of conifers

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