Species profile

Name: the moose (Alces alces) is the largest and heaviest species of deer in the world. In Europe, they are known as ‘elk’ which can cause confusion as the name ‘elk’ refers to red deer in North America.

Appearance: moose are easily recognised by their large size, brown coats, and enormous antlers. Adult males have broad ‘open hand’ shaped antlers, unlike most other deer which have ‘twig-like’ antlers.

Size: moose stand up to 2 metres tall at the shoulder and weigh up to 700 kg. They can reach over 3 metres in length and their antlers can grow up to 1.5 metres wide.

Diet: they are herbivores, feeding on plants, grasses, and fruits. Their diet is often low in sodium which means they need to eat a lot of aquatic plants to obtain this mineral.

Did you know: cave paintings found in Europe show that moose have been hunted by humans since the Stone Age. Excavations in Sweden have found moose antlers in the remains of human settlements from 6,000 BC! In Northern Scandanavia there are also remains of moose pits – deep pits with steep sides that would have been covered with branches and leaves to catch moose.

Location: moose live in the forests of Northern Europe, Russia, and North America.

Where to see Moose

According to reports submitted to WildSide, you can see moose in the following places:

Place Chance to see User rating No. reports
United States
very low
very good

Photo credit: PublicDomainImages under a Creative Commons licence from Pixabay

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