Elk bull roaring


Elk are one of the world's largest species of deer once thought to be the same species as the red deer. They are now known to be a species in their own right and are in fact more closely related to sika deer than to red deer. Primarily grazers and browsers of open woodland and forests, elk are native to North America and east Asia. They have also become well established in all other countries where they've been introduced. The males grow large, impressive antlers every year that are used in the spectacular clashes that take place during the seasonal rut. Calves can be particularly vulnerable to wolves, coyotes, bears and big cats.

Scientific name: Cervus canadensis

Rank: Species

Common names:

  • North American elk,
  • Wapiti

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The Elk can be found in a number of locations including: China, North America. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


The following habitats are found across the Elk distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

BBC News about Elk

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