On Easter Sunday, 2009, in the Perigord region of France a local landowner, Eustace Levond, made a fascinating discovery. He was out looking for truffles in the forest when his pig, Emile, disappeared down a hole near the edge of a cliff.

Eustace was distraught and brought a spade to find Emile whose oinks were becoming less audible by the minute. Eustace eventually found Emile in a cave and was about to revive him with some Armagnac when he noticed a strange shape protruding from a layer of red shale. Levond dropped his brie, baguette, and beret in astonishment. When he had revived both Emile and himself, Eustace cleaned away the soil from the shape and found what looked like a large, ancient bone. Eustace immediately phoned his friend at the University of Toulouse, Professor Armand le Notre, who worked in the Paleontology department.

This is an extract from the book Animals Evolution Avoided