These non-threatening movements calmed the rabbit or rat and they became entranced by the rhythmic flow of the ferret’s limbs. Sadly, for the prey, they rarely saw the Andalusian ferret’s accomplice until it was too late to save their lives.

After the Moors left Granada in 1492, the Andalusian ferrets were either left behind to fend for themselves or were taken back to North Africa. The ferrets who were left behind lived chiefly in The Alpujarras in the Sierra Nevada where the local ferrets used less subtle hunting techniques and the Andalusian ferrets had to adapt to survive. The ferrets who went back to North Africa lost their flamenco environment and so the techniques used dissipated through the centuries. To this day, however, ferrets and weasels still do, occasionally, use little dances to captivate their prey and this can be traced back to the Andalusian Ferrets of a thousand years ago.

This is an extract from the book Animals Evolution Avoided