December 27, 2020

Tasmanian Tiger has been sighted in the wild after being declared extinct 80 years ago !

Tasmanian Tiger|Thyalcine|Tasmanian Wolf| Island of Tasmania| Tasmanina tiger has been sighted in the wild|Extinct Tasmanian tiger 



 The Thylacine or Tasmanian tiger, also known as Tasmanian Wolf was a marsupial that roamed in the region of New Guinea and the Australian mainland has now become a history. This majestic creature which was iconic among the inhabitants of the island of Tasmania has been hunted and destroyed to the extent that it has been declared extinct officially and the last living individual, Benjamin died in 1936 in Beaumaris Zoo in Tasmania. 

                                        
Tasmanian Tiger or Thylacine 
Image Source-  Google | Image by - Common wikimedia

The Tasmanian tiger or Tasmanian Wolf was a marsupial resembling a dog rather than a tiger having a fox face and slender body which was active mostly in the night. It had a body and characteristics to facilitate the killing of wallabies and birds. Thylacine or Tasmanian Tiger has a body length of 40 to 51 inches and height ranging from 21 to 26 inches. It weighed around 33- 65 pounds (15- 30 kg ) while the average weight was 55 pounds (25 kg). 

 The body was a yellowish-brown colour with dark black stripes on the back of the body. It had strong hind legs bigger than the forelegs and a tail that was thick at the origin and tapered along the end of the body. The most significant feature of the Tasmanian tiger or thylacine was its skull which was more of like a dog and a very strong bone crushing bite force of enormous jaws with a smaller braincase to facilitate jaw movement. It has a pouch-like most marsupial which opened rearwards and females used to give birth to two to four young ones at a given time. 

                                                    
Tasmanian Tiger or Thylacine Skull 
Image Source-  Google | Image by - Common wikimedia


 The Tasmanian tiger or thylacine once found in most regions of Tasmania was declared extinct 80 years ago and the last living individual died in captivity in 1936. With various researches and studies, it was concluded by environmentalists that the extinction of such a remarkable species was caused mainly because of two significant reasons. 

                                                       
Image Source-  Google | Image by - Common wikimedia


Tasmanian tigers were hunted by the local inhabitants to a certain extent that only a few hundred were left in the wild and those which were left had to face extreme competition from Dingos (wild dogs of Australia) where Thylacine didn’t stand a chance. The local people used to kill them because they used to destroy vegetation and crops. 

 Furthermore, rapid settlement of people in the region and destruction of habitation of various mammals and bird species in the region which was the source of food for thylacine or Tasmanian tiger also saw sudden depletion in numbers in the wild. The European settlers came to the region in the 1930s and the last few Tasmanian tigers were also hunted to extinction. 

                                                           
Image Source-  Google | Image by - Common wikimedia


 After understanding the importance of the Tasmanian tiger in the ecosystem of Tasmania, several steps were taken in captivity to breed and protect the species, but that didn’t turn out as planned and soon the last individual also died in captivity. "But is the Tasmanian tiger extinct" or a very small number of individual may still be there in the wild which have managed to remain in disguise in the lush green wild of Tasmania?

 


The Department of Environment has released a document that mentioned sightings of the Tasmanian tiger from 2016 to 2019 which mentioned creatures just like a large cat which was 13 to 18-inch height and around 30 inches long having dark black bands on its back resembling a Tasmanian tiger. The recent sighting was in August 2019 and since 2016 there have been 8 sightings but most of them are inconclusive. 

Various campaigns and researches were launched in the region but still not even a single specimen was found to confirm the existence of the species to date. However, researchers and scientists are still carrying out the study to find any living individual if present still in the wild, or find a way to bring back this elusive creature to existence by artificial cloning. 


 Tasmanian Tiger|Thyalcine|Tasmanian Wolf| Island of Tasmania| Tasmanina tiger has been sighted in the wild|Extinct Tasmanian tiger

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