By Ryan Sokoloski
Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks 

Anthropomorphism - The good and bad

Field Notes


September 23, 2021

Photo provided

Ryan Sokoloski, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks State Park Manager

Anthropomorphism (pronounced: ann-throw-poe-MORF-ism) is the term used to define when we give animals (or inanimate objects such as rocks & trees) human characteristics. Here are a few examples:

"Gus" is the world's largest Western Larch Tree and a full-time resident of Seeley Lake Montana. He is over 1,000 years old, 160 feet tall, 34 feet around. He has seen countless changes in human activity and loves his local celebrity status.

Just south of Helena Montana is the "Sleeping Giant", a geological mountain formation that takes on the unmistakable appearance of a giant human sleeping o...

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