Weekly Puzzler Answer #89

Who or what made these marks on the trees?

Who or what made these marks on the trees?

If you live in the northeast or Canada, you’ve probably seen these marks on trees and maybe even the animals who make them–ELK. Only second in size (in the deer family) to the Moose, elk are pretty hard to miss.

Why do they do this? Elk, like all members of the deer family are herbivores. They feed on native grasses, forbs and tree sprouts and in winter–tree bark.

Old elk bites on aspen trees

Old elk bites on aspen trees

Finding an aspen grove with old scars shows where the elk have con grated during winter months when snow was deep. Since they lack upper incisors, they work the bark with their bottom front teeth, gouging the bark in an upward motion.

Do you know much about these giant mammals? For instance, how much food do they eat daily or how much can a large male weigh? Do you know what sound they make, where they live or what’s special about their stomachs? They will be the animal featured this coming week so check back to read more about these magnificent animals.

elk--2

Until then, have a wonderful weekend. CLICK HERE for  the next puzzler.

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