In May 2017 I created a slideshow presentation about the Tasmanian Tiger. I chose to do a research project about this animal because I am very interested in marsupials and animals who have gone extinct. Unlike many other mammals they give birth to very small young who grow inside of a pouch on the mother’s underside. The Tasmanian tiger is a supposedly extinct animal which has an incredibly sad story. I have attached The slides accompanied with the research that I performed below.

Slides

links in this slide: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5f1_Vv1wri8   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1way8xEsxUg

links in this post: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6vqCCI1ZF7o

links in this slide: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_M-SskpGi4

Research

WHAT IS IT

Thylacine is proper name

Scientific name: Thylacinus cynocephalus

Means dog-headed pouched one in greek

Was largest carnivorous marsupial until 1986

Aka opossum hyena

Last member of the thylacinidae family (dog-like carnivorous marsupials)

 

HABITAT

Continental Australia’s eucalypts forests, wetlands grasslands

Also found in new guinea thousands of years ago

We know this because we found fossils and aboriginal paintings

Thylacines disappeared from New Guinea and Australia because of competition for food by the dodo bird and dingo

In tasmania they preferred woodlands of the mid tasmanian and coastal heath which became prime housing and livestock territory

Home range of 15-30 sq mi

Non territorial

 

APPEARANCE

13-20 stripes on its back that resemble tiger

Stripes fade as they age

Light to dark brown fur

Belly is cream

Short, soft haired

Hair felt wooly

Very long tails 25 tail vertebrae  that’d be 3 ½ of our necks

Tail doesn’t bend

6ft from nose to tail tip

2 ft tall at the shoulder

66lbs

Size of mickey

 

Europeans thought they were hyenas

Jaws open up to 80 degrees

Muscular but weak jaws with 64 teeth

Front feet had five digits while back feet had four digits

Non retractable claws

Tri-lobal feet but dogs have two lobes

5-7 yrs in wild

9 yrs in captivity

 

BEHAVIOUR

Nocturnal creatures

Shy and secretive

Avoided contact with humans

Spend the day in small caves, tree hollows, nests

Retreated to sheltered forest in day and hunted in the open heath at night

Able to balance on its hind feet

Can hop like a kangaroo

Usually very quiet creatures

Growl and hiss when agitated Gives off bad odour when agitated

Made cough-like barks when hunting

Whining cry for location

Low noises for communication between family members

An awkward gait – almost a trot

Persistent runner, but not extremely fast

Very well tempered

Did not resist capture which lead to their extinction

Many died from shock while encaptured

 

HUNTING/DIET

Ate meat

Crepuscular hunters

Relied on sight and sound for hunting- not a good sense of smell

Very smart hunter

Relied on prey to exhaust

Preyed upon sheep and poultry from settlers

Rarely a scavenger

Mostly wallabies

 

BREEDING

Winter and spring were breeding season

Joeys are born hairless

Crawled into the mother’s pouch

Four joeys could be carried at one time

Litter size was usually only three

As the joeys grow the pouch expands until it almost reaches the ground

When joeys are ready to leave the pouch they have fur and stripes and remain in a very secure den

 

WHY ARE THEY EXTINCT

Hunting and habitat were main cause

distemper -disease killed off a few in the later years

Settlers introduced thylacine bounty because they ate their livestock

Price for killing a thylacine was only 1 pound = 1.30 usd

By 1909 2184 thylacines were killed for bounty

They were sought after by zoos around the world

1926 london zoo bought their last thylacine for 150 pounds= 194 usd

That would be around $2,874 now or 2219 pounds now

1933 last thylacine captured for hobart zoo

1936 last thylacine ever seen again died

1936 thylacine added to protected wildlife just 59 days before benjamin died

1986 thylacine pronounced extinct

John gould was an english ornithologist ( an expert on birds) and bird artist

 

ARE THEY STILL AROUND

Sightings have occurred, but no conclusive evidence

People think they see them mostly at night in the northern area of tasmania

 

Much research has been put into cloning dna

Thylacine is on the list of many extinct animals to become “de extinct”

Research started in 1999 but was halted in 2005 because the dna was in poor condition

Scientist from university of melbourne have spliced tasmanian tiger dna into a tasmanian devil

Maybe 20 years before we get an actual tasmanian tiger

Many questions to be asked

Will the animal made in a test tube be able to learn how to be a tiger?

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cax8FzIXVp4  – sighting?

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1way8xEsxUg – how they would run

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6vqCCI1ZF7o – last known thylacine alive

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5f1_Vv1wri8 -bark

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_M-SskpGi4 2008 sighting