Irish Elk/Giant Deer

The Irish Elk was the largest deer that ever lived.

Its home was Eurasia, from Ireland into the lakes at Baikal, and it lived during the Pleistocen area.

The last of the giant deer died out about 7 thousand years ago.

Irish Elk Irish Elk/Giant Deer
Irish Elk

The Irish Elk was not strictly Irish in nature, and lived in many other places too. It also was not related to the modern day Elk which it is named after.

It was however extremely large, and had formidable antlers. The Elk was about 7 feet tall at the shoulder.

Its antlers could measure as much as twelve feet from tip to tip, which is unprecedented in the deer family.

The Giant Elk probably evolved around the Eemaina interglacial time from other, smaller deer.

Not a great deal is known of its habits or the entire area in which it was available however the antlers and skeletal remains show it was enormous.

More than enough for a cave lion’s meal, I would think.

The Natural History Museum in Dublin Ireland has a huge collection of skeletal remains of the Giant Elk on view to the public.

Links to Outside Sites with information on the Giant Elk.

irish elk2 Irish Elk/Giant Deer
Irish Elk

CGI picture from “Walking with Beasts”. Discovery Channel.

Megaloceros, Irish elk, Giant deer. BBC.

The Case of the Irish Elk. University of California at Berkeley.

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