Montana designated the grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) as the official state animal in 1983. Grizzly bears can be found in Glacier National Park and the mountains of northwest Montana. Grizzly bears are the largest carnivores in America. An adult grizzly bear can stand 8 feet tall on its hind legs, weigh up to 1,500 pounds, and run at speeds up to thirty-five miles an hour.
Their coloring ranges from blond to deep brown or black. Grizzly bears are omnivorous, feeding on a variety of plants (including berries, roots, sprouts, and fungi) as well as fish, insects and small mammals. A grizzly bear will put on hundreds of pounds of fat in preparation for winter hibernation.
The grizzly bear is considered a subspecies of brown bear, distinguished by their larger size, longer claws, and concave facial profile. The grizzly also has a large hump over the shoulders (a mass of muscle used to power the forelimbs in digging). Wildlife experts say fewer than 1,000 grizzlies are left in the western United States. The grizzly bear is listed as threatened in the contiguous United States and endangered in parts of Canada.