'Ice Age' wolf bones found in Thornton Cleveleys garden

Wolf bones
Image caption The bones could date back to the Ice Age

The remains of a wolf believed to date back to the Ice Age have been found in a back garden in Lancashire.

The family has given the skeleton to Manchester Museum, whose experts are to carry out carbon-dating tests to verify its estimated age of 20,000 years.

The bones were unearthed by Simon Ferguson and his sons as they dug a hole for a pond in Thornton-Cleveleys.

"The skull was like the wolf was jumping out of the ground," said his 12-year-old son, Richard.

Image caption Simon Ferguson said he was amazed by the prehistoric find

"The museum told us it was a prehistoric Timber Wolf," added Adam.

Mr Ferguson said: "It predates the Ancient Egyptians and to find it quite shallow on a fairly new housing estate is amazing."

David Gelsthorpe, Manchester Museum's curator, said: "The excitement is how complete it is - it is an incredible specimen, everything from the tail to the tip of the nose is utterly preserved.

"That is really really exciting in terms of climate change - what was happening with animals in the last Ice Age?"

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