Elk (Alces alces; Ukrainian: los’). The largest even-hoofed mammal of the deer family. The elk reaches up to 3 m in length, up to 2.3 m in height, and up to 650 kg in weight. It has large, palmated antlers and a short tail. Its hair is short and grayish-brown in color, turning lighter in winter. The elk lives in marshy forests, feeding on grass, young shoots, leaves, and bark. In Ukraine the elk was common until the 16th century in the forest and forest-steppe belts. Then it was almost wiped out by humans because of its tasty meat and valuable hide. Today some elk survive in the forest belt, particularly in northwestern Polisia.
Encyclopedia of Ukraine