Speed Reads

Ancient artifacts: Pig Edition

Pigs find evidence of 12,000-year-old civilization on remote Scottish island

A group of Scottish pigs discovered the earliest evidence of a population of 12,000-year-old hunter gatherers on Isle of Islay, Discovery News reports. While certainly archaeologists can come in all shapes, sizes, and species, the pigs weren't actually looking for Ice Age stone tools but were munching on bracken when they unwittingly dug up the artifacts. Their sharp-eyed gamekeeper reported the find.

"Previously, the earliest evidence [of humans at Islay] dated to 9,000 years ago, after the end of the Ice Age," Steven Mithen, one of the archaeologists to study the site, told Discovery News. "The new discovery puts people on Islay before the Ice Age had come to an end at 12,000 years ago."

Other discoveries made at the site included animal bones, antlers, and crystal quartz tools dating from a number of different time periods. The craftsmanship of the tools hinted that the ancient people originated from the region that is now northern Germany, back when Britain used to be connected to Europe by a landmass called "Doggerland."

The pigs had no comment on the find.