Barbed wire is a common sight along the dirt roads in New England and beyond. It is nasty stuff that does its job keeping cows inside the field they are supposed to reside in. Cows don't have long and fluffy coats to protect them from the nasty pointed prongs that really are weapons along a piece of wire.
Upon closer inspection, can you see the spider web that has been woven through the wire? Boy, I think some handspinners and yarn factories could spin a pretty amazing yarn if they looked into the technology of making barbed wire, don't you?
Barbed wire won't keep a flock of sheep in. Sheep have just enough wool cover to slipping through a barbed wired fence an easy thing to do. For our sheep we use 4 foot woven wire or electrified netting. But, as with everything in farming, the sheep somehow escape. This morning our neighbor called to say that some of our lambs were on her lawn. We're still scratching our head about where they escaped from.
I'm always amazed that one or two floating strands of wire will keep 2000 pound cows in.
There's an interesting museum and website devoted to barbed wire. It's called The Devil's Rope Museum and you can check it out here.