The aurochs

The ancestor of all domestic cattle

its likeness is drawn in the cave paintings in Lascaux, France.

It ranged from Africa to the Middle East to India and Europe.

Its domestication occurred either in 6000 BC in the Fertile Crescent

or 2000 years earlier in the once lush plains of the eastern Sahara.

It was a “fearsome horned creature

that could grow to be six feet tall”

and could weigh over 2000 pounds.

Hunting, competition with domestic cattle for food, and disease

helped to push this animal to extinction.

The last female of its kind died in Poland in 1627.

© What is Missing? Foundation
Image: Corbis
Source: IUCN & New York Times

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