During our excursions in the woods on Wiley Hill, in Ellwood City, Pa., Scoutmaster Art Johnson taught us that nature provided numerous direction finders. As noted in a previous column, one indicator was moss covering the north side of trees and rocks, wind direction and locating the North Star. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reported herds of grazing and resting deer and cattle tend to align themselves with the Earth’s magnetic fields. In 2010, researchers observed 3,000 deer in the Czech Republic, noting that regardless of wind or sunlight, they generally aligned to the magnetic north. Researchers believe creatures can sense the Earth’s magnetic field, and field detection is a fundamental role in spatial perception. Even if creatures move short distances, magnetism assists their navigation. Fastcast: Storms.