Brief Summary. The Irish Elk, M. giganteus, was one of the largest members of the Cervidae (deer) family in the late Quaternary. Despite the name, it was found. The Irish elk (Megaloceros giganteus) also called the giant deer or Irish giant deer, is an extinct species of deer in the genus Megaloceros and is one of the  Species‎: ‎†M. giganteus. Irish elk, (Megaloceros giganteus), also called Irish deer or giant deer, extinct species of deer, characterized by immense body size and wide antlers, commonly.


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Irish elk | extinct mammal |

He believed that their immense antlers did not only evolve for combat, but that they were also visual representations. Gould and many modern-day scientists have concluded that the antlers served as megaloceros giganteus, in which the male elk with large antlers were more suited to megaloceros giganteus females.


The situation is less clear regarding the final demise of the Irish elk in continental Eurasia east megaloceros giganteus the Urals. Restoration by Charles R.

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Knight Frequent debates occur as to whether or not sexual selection led to the Irish elk's extinction. Sexual selection can increase or decrease a population's chance of extinction, due to behaviors such as male-male competition and female choice. Also, sexual harassment by males can result in lower female fecundity or even death.

Selection must, therefore, favor megaloceros giganteus less extreme male genotypes, and generating a scenario seems impossible where males with larger antlers are still selected for when the lifetime reproductive success of males with megaloceros giganteus antlers approaches zero as required for deterministic extinction to occur.

This can pose significant threats to population survival. Females may adaptively avoid the accumulation of inbreeding, so that female choice might increase effective population size. This also supports the belief that the large antler size was used for social display. The antlers were more compact, and the tines near the base large and palmate.

Lived in Mid-Pleistocene Germany. The large antlers of the moose, although small relative to the giant deer, led to Megaloceros giganteus being known as an elk. And the fact that the earliest fossil findings and even today the best remains come from Ireland lead to the species being dubbed the "Irish elk.

However, Megaloceros giganteus was a relatively recent arrival megaloceros giganteus Ireland, first appearing somewhat about 37, years ago and lasting megaloceros giganteus about 32, years ago IPCC and then again inhabiting Ireland during the Allerod interstadial phase at the end of the last glaciation, from about 12, to 11, years ago IPCC ; Gould A significant collection of M.

During the Pleistocenethe Irish elk ranged as far west as Ireland and Great Britain, as far south as northern Africa, and as far east as Siberia and China Gould The latest known remains of the species have been carbon dated to the early Holocene about 11, years ago Stuart megaloceros giganteus al.

It possibly evolved from M. megaloceros giganteus


The earlier taxon —sometimes considered a paleosubspecies M. Fossils and historical importance The earliest known drawing of antlers of giant deer date to Gould Thomas Megaloceros giganteus provided the first published description. Inthe first discovery in continental Europe of fossils of this giant deer were made in Germany Gould The giant deer and its massive antlers has been important in debates on evolutionary theory.

Gould notes that "every great evolutionist has used the giant deer megaloceros giganteus defend his favored views. If God is perfect, and He made a perfect creation, why would He allow any of his created organisms to become extinct?