The mention of a remarkable creature : the “Tahash.”
Translated variously as “sea cow”, “badger”, “porpoise”, “seal”, and even “goat” – the skin of the Tahash was one of coverings of the Tabernacle. But there is much confusion as to what this animal actually is. Or was.
What is our conclusion with respect to the tahash which existed in Moses’ days? — Said R. Elai in the name of R. Simeon b. Lakish, R. Meir used to maintain, The tahash of Moses’ day was a separate species, and the Sages could not decide whether it belonged to the genus of wild beasts (chayya) or to the genus of domestic animals (behayma);
and it had one horn in its forehead, and it came to Moses’ hand [providentially] just for the occasion, and he made the [covering of the] Tabernacle, and then it was hidden.
(also quoted in Numbers Rabbah 6:3)
Midrash Tanchuma goes further:
Midrash Tanchuma, Terumah 6: "Rabbi Yehudah said: There was a large, kosher wild animal in the wilderness, and it had a single horn in its forehead, and its skin was six colors; they took it and made the tapestries from it.
First of all, the idea of a one-horned animal of indeterminate species – and second, that it seemed to have either been a unique creature or to have gone extinct!
Whatever it was, prosaic or unique – it is fun to see that the Talmudic rabbis acknowledge some aspects of evolution.