extinct title

THYLACINE - Thylacine

Adult at Hobarts Zoo 1930s (captive specimen) - courtesy of the Australian Museum

Thylacine (Thylacinus cynocephalus)

Other names: Tasmanian Tiger, Tasmanian Wolf, Marsupial Wolf

Length: 1.0 - 1.3m

Shoulder height: 60cm

Tail length: 55 - 65cm

Weight: 20 - 30kg

Location: Australia (including Tasmania) and New Guinea

Habitat: Forests, grasslands, wetlands

Diet: Large and small mammals, birds

Description: Foxlike appearance with stiff narrow tail. Large muscular jaw, slender body. Yellowish-brown base coat with black striping along the back and rear, with a lighter underside

Reason for extinction: Persecution and invasion of foreign animals such as the Dingo

Year of extinction: 1936

Lifespan: Wild, up to 7yrs

Captivity, up to 9yrs

Facts: The Thylacine was unusual in that not only could it open it's jaws to around 120 degrees, but also both sexes possessed a pouch

The largest recorded Thylacine had a length of 2.9m from head to tail

In 1930 a farmer was believed to have killed the last ever Thylacine. The last captive Thylacine resided in Hobart Zoo and was named 'Benjamin' (although sex was never 100% confirmed). Benjamin died on the 7th of September 1936

The Thylacine was the last of it's genus and family

There have been many reported sightings since the Thylacines extinction, although no hard proof of continued existence has yet been found

The Thylacine had a bounty upon it's head and was hunted relentlessly. It is suggested that the wild specimen, shown at the bottom of the page, was actually a taxidermied specimen (with the bird placed in it's mouth), set up to encourage the trapping and killing of the Thylacine.


Stuffed specimen - courtesy of Random Rupert

THYLACINE - Thylacine


Images 1 and 2 courtesy of the Australian Museum

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