John Clayton, in his account of the Virginia Quadrupeds, calls the Elke ...
was in all respects like those of our red-deer or stags, only larger...
The word "elk" originated in Proto-Germanic, from which Old English evolved and has cognates in other Indo-European languages, e.g.
elg in Danish/Norwegian; älg in Swedish; alnis in Latvian; Elch in German; and łoś in Polish (Latin alcē or alcēs and Ancient Greek The word "elk" remained in usage because of its existence in continental Europe but, without any living animals around to serve as a reference, the meaning became rather vague to most speakers of English, who used "elk" to refer to "large deer" in general.
The black moose is (by all that have hitherto writ of it) accounted a very large creature....
The stag, buck, or male of this kind has a palmed horn, not like that of our common or fallow-deer, but the palm is much longer, and more like that of the German elke.
Confusingly, the word "elk" is used in North America to refer to a different animal, Cervus canadensis, which is also called by the Algonkian indigenous name, "wapiti".
Eventually, in North America the wapiti became known as an elk while the moose retained its Anglicized Native-American name.
Moose typically inhabit boreal forests and temperate broadleaf and mixed forests of the Northern Hemisphere in temperate to subarctic climates.
Hunting and other human activities have caused a reduction in the size of the moose's range over time.
In the West, moose populations extend well north into Canada (British Columbia and Alberta), and more isolated groups have been verified as far south as the mountains of Utah and Colorado and as far west as the Lake Wenatchee area of the Washington Cascades.
Moose have extended their range southwards in the western Rocky Mountains, with initial sightings in Yellowstone National Park in 1868, and then to the northern slope of the Uinta Mountains in Utah in the first half of the twentieth century.