GREAT FALLS (AP) – Maybe it was a grizzly bear family reunion.
Montana wildlife officials spotted 13 grizzly bears together on a private ranch in the foothills of the Rocky Mountain Front southwest of Dupuyer.
Fish, Wildlife and Parks grizzly bear management specialist Mike Madel tells the Great Falls Tribune that it seemed like a gathering of females and young who were related or familiar with each other.
Madel was tracking radio-collared grizzly bears along the front during the third week of October when he spotted and photographed the group.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services grizzly bear biologist Wayne Kasworm says he's never seen that many bears in one location in Montana. He echoed Madel's theory that the bears could have some relationship, possibly mothers and daughters and even grandmothers.
There was no indication that any food in the area had drawn the crowd as the bears prepare to hibernate.