|What is, and what is NOT, a reindeer?
|Reindeer, also called caribou, can run really
fast, reaching 50 mph. This is faster than any
human could ever go!
Reindeer are big animals, as they are 5'2'' to
7' tall. The most impressive thing about them
is their antlers, as they can be a 53'' long and
39'' wide. Both male and female reindeer
Normal reindeer have very interesting hooves
that change according to the season. In the
winter, the pads of their paws are smaller,
leaving more room for the hoof to cut through
the snow. This allows them to run without
slipping and to dig for roots.
Reindeer are herbivorous animals that mostly
feed on moss, grasses and some leaves,
although they may get fish and rodents every
now and then. In the summer, their hooves
are softer so that they can walk better on the
|Elk, called wapiti in Europe, are one of
the largest deer species.
Their shoulders rise about 5 ft from the
ground, and the male's antlers can
reach up to 4 feet above the head,
which gives them a total of 9 feet in
height. A basketball hoop is 10 ft. Elk
can range from 500 to 1,300 pounds
males are larger than females.
Their necks are shaggy, which makes
them easy to identify from other deer
Another key difference between elk and
deer, moose and reindeer is that male
elk have a loud, high-pitched bugle
which they sound during the morning
and evening. On the other hand, deer
only make occasional bleats.
|White-tail Deer are smaller, maturing at
anywhere between 100 and 300 lb . They
can move at speeds of up to 30 mph, and
they are able to clear 10-foot fences!
White-tailed deer are not carnivores.
These gentle herbivorous animals
consume leaves, fruits, twigs, grass and
acorns; they also have a diet of corn,
lichens and alfalfa.
The white-tailed deer can be found all
over the United States and Canada, as
well as Mexico and in northern South
American nations. Residing mostly in
meadows, fields and coniferous forests,
they do not range to the far north.
|Moose are called elk in Europe, which
makes them easy to confuse with elk or
wapitis. However, their flat, wide antlers
and bulky face differentiates them from the
other types of deer.
Moose are the largest deer species in the
world. If you see a deer that's more than 6
ft 9 in. at the withers, it is definitely a
moose. The male's antlers are 4 ft 9 in.
wide. Like elk, moose are browsers and
not grazers, which differentiates them from
deer. While reindeer, white-tail and elk
live in herds, moose are solitary animals.
|Here's a great video about Reindeer from the
Center for Cultural Diversity.
The Secret Life of Reindeer