There is fresh snow on the high mountain ridges, a bone chilling wind from the west rattles the tamarack, scattering golden needles across the forest floor. Tendrils of silver fog accent the hush that lies over the valley floor; winter is fast approaching and all of nature prepares.
Much of the wildlife that inhabits these north woods is getting ready for hibernation. Many mammals have the ability to Sleep through the cold, gray days ahead. Chipmunks, skunks, and squirrels as well as raccoons, rodents and bats simply bed down and hardly stir until they arise again in the spring. As true hibernators, their body temperatures drop to near ambient and heart rates slow dramatically as they experience a deep comatose sleep state of torpidity. However, these animals will periodically rouse themselves from their deep slumber to eat stored food, quench their thirst and to urinate or defecate. Rodents sleep very deeply while others slumber more lightly.
Bears are a bit different....... Continue Reading Montana Bears Prepare For A Long Winter Sleep