The moose was designated the official Alaska land mammal in 1998. Moose (Alces alces) are the world's largest member of the deer family, and the Alaskan moose (Alces alces gigas) is the largest of all moose (males weigh 1,000 - 1,600 pounds). Moose mostly inhabit northern forests of North America, Europe, and Russia (in Europe they are called "elk").
Moose have long legs, a heavy body, small tail, drooping nose, and a "bell" or dewlap under the chin. Color can range from golden brown to almost black (depending on the season and age of the moose).
Alaskans often find moose in their yards in the winter. Other conflicts between man and moose include moose eating crops, standing on airfields, and wandering city streets. Historically, moose were an important source of food, clothing, and implements to Indians living along Alaska's major rivers. The moose is also the state animal of Maine.