Scientific Name: Carvus elaphus
Other Names: Bactrian Wapiti, Red Deer, Wapiti
Habitat and Range: Western United States to the Eastern Rockies in open woodland forests and swamp lands.
Captive Lifespan: Upwards to 20 years.
Gestation: Between 240-260 days one calf is born.
Diet: Herbivore- mostly browsers eating bushes and shrubs but also grasses, flowers, and even mushrooms.
Adaptations: Being social animals they spend most of the time living in large herds upwards to 400 individuals and it is controlled by a single cow (female elk). The sexes separate in the spring when the calves are born.
IUCN Status: Least Concern 2008
Special Interest: Elk are also knows as 'Wapiti' which means 'white rump' in the language of Shawnee
Here at the CMC Zoo: Our Elk, Emma, lives in the yard with the bison.