What do Montana Animals Do in the Fall?

During the fall, it is not uncommon to see some unusual behavior coming from our Montana wildlife. In preparation for the coming winter, deer, birds, bears, and even elk will take notice of the change in the season and will begin their search for mates, gathering food, or even prepping their space for the frigid temperatures!

We are fascinated by the change in animal behavior from summer to fall, and fall to winter. Here are some of our favorite critters, and what they might be up to during the Montana autumn!

For some, It's the Most Romantic Season of the Year!

From September through October, bull elk are going through a massive change. They are beginning their search for a seasonal mate! In the fall, male elk will become much more aggressive and will attempt to establish dominance over other bulls. In fact, you might even see two male elk sparring in the fall!

During a Montana Autumn, you may also hear the iconic elk bugle! Known as the mating call that bulls use to garner the attention of their female counterparts, elk will release a high-pitched noise, which eventually transforms into a low groan. This distinctive sound will alert any female elk in the area that there is a bull nearby!

Our elk friends Jason and Chad are out looking for love!

Elk Tinder Profile

Looking for some elk-inspired goodies? We've got you covered! Check out our 

Elk Ornament by Old World Christmas, Elk Country Runner by Kinara Fine Weavings, or even our Montana Elk Droppings by Huckleberry Haven

For others, It's the Hungriest Time of the Year!

While some animals are out looking for love, others are preparing to rest! Both black bears and grizzly bears, trying to put on weight for hibernation, eat and drink nearly nonstop during the fall season. This behavior, typically known as hyperphagia, showcases a bear's instinctual increased appetite for food!

During the fall, bears will be very active, constantly in search of food to fill their endless appetite. When winter arrives, bears will settle down in a den, hollow tree/log, or even rock crevices for their winter-long rest. While many people believe that bears are sleeping during this time, they actually just drop their body temperature, heart rate, and respiration, placing them in a state of extremely low activity. How cool!

Bears in the Fall

If you are looking for a snuggly bear stuffed animal to snuggle this fall season, check out our Grizzly Bear by WishpetsSitting at 12" inches tall, this cuddly guy really knows how to be the softest bear around. This fuzzy friend also loves to travel and he is begging to go on your next big adventure!

Some Animals Like to Renovate their Space!

Known as one of the most widespread species of hawks across the nation, Red Tailed Hawks are truly beautiful birds! Did you know that they are the largest Buteo hawks in North America? In fact, their wingspans are a little over four feet wide on average! Often spotted along highways or hovering over prey, these large raptors have garnered the attention of bird enthusiasts throughout the United States.

While not typically laying eggs until the spring, it is not uncommon for Red-Tailed Hawks to begin to do some nesting maintenance during the fall. What can we say? Who doesn't love a good fall home décor refresh?

Red Tailed Hawk in the Fall

Looking to "renovate" your space with a new stuffy? Check out our Cuddlekins Red-Tailed Hawk by Wild RepublicAs one of the most common large hawks in North America, kids will eventually see one on a road trip and be so excited to have a matching stuffed animal just like them. From talons to beak, it's a fun way to get kids involved in the world around them! 

Other Animals Schedule their Hair Appointments in the Fall!

Otters are well-known for their playful and sociable personalities during the summer. This being said, during the fall, they are preparing for some hardships they may have to endure during the Montana winter. River otters will become more solitary and nomadic, often having to search longer and harder for food and shelter.

While otters are undeniably undergoing some behavioral changes during the fall, they are also changing physically! In the fall, otters will prepare their fur for the colder temperatures of the Montana winter. In fact, it is not unusual seeing them rolling, shaking, or fluffing their coat after being in the water. By doing so, otters will use their thick and insulated fur to keep the warmth in, and the cold out!

Otters in the Fall

If you love otters as much as we do, you totally need to check out the Warmies Otter by Intelex USAThis sweet little plush is perfect for anyone looking for a new cuddly buddy who is always down to join you on your wildest of adventures.

Some critters even begin planning their vacations!

Known for their snow-white appearance, Snowy Owls are truly fascinating. Often spotted in the Tundra - or cold, open, and treeless spaces, Snowy Owls rely on their keen sense of hearing to spot prey underneath layers of snow!

While Snowy Owls are typically cold-weather warriors, some, mostly younger birds, will migrate south during the fall season. Who can blame them? Sometimes all you need is a nice warm seasonal getaway!

Snowy Owl Seasonal GetawayIf you've been searching for the most adorable plush, you've come to the right place! The Snowy Owl Audubon Stuffed Animal features the true birdcall of an iconic snowy owl. How neat!


Written by: Alexa Jorgenson, MGC Content Creator

Photography by: Luke Clark, MGC Photographer

Blog Cover & Graphic Design by: Averi Thompson, MGC Graphic Designer

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