It's an old farmer's tale, but there may be some truth to it.
When cows lay down it means that rain is on its way. Farmers have been touting this advice for years, and it was often dismissed as a myth. But there is a chance that it may not be a myth after all.
A study by the Universities of Arizona and Northern Missouri looked at the body temperature of cattle across the American West, in an effort to find the link between temperature and milk production, and in doing so it may have also found an unexpected link between cows and rain.
The study showed that cows prefer to stand up in hot weather, because standing exposes more of a cow's body to the air, allowing them to better disperse heat and stay cooler.
Readers of the study have made the leap that, if cows stand more in hot weather, it means they may be more inclined to lie down in cooler weather -- such as when a storm front is approaching.
The researcher himself, Dr. Jamison Allen, thinks it's a big leap to make, but animals have known equally unexplainable things in the past.
Why not the weather?