Giant Deer
Megaloceros giganteus
Lived 400,000-7,700 years ago
Peat bog, Ireland
USNM 7051

Often called the “Irish Elk,” Megaloceros ranged beyond Ireland and its closest living relative is the fallow deer, not the elk. Megaloceros lived across northern Eurasia from Siberia to Ireland, and like other deer, shed even these giant antlers every year. This specimen, from the Paleobiology collections at the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History, is the Smithsonian’s oldest mounted fossil skeleton, and has been on display since 1872.

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