Scientists and researchers from across the globe have devoted much of their time and research to find whether the Tasmanian Tigers still exist or not. The Tasmanian tiger, also known as the Thylacine, has been declared extinct 23 years back but was wiped off from the Australian mainland even much before in the 1940's.
Researchers like Dr Austin from the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA collected animal droppings that were found around Tasmania in the late 1950's and even in the 60's and conserved them in the Art Gallery and Tasmanian Museum. Dr Austin, who took special interest to collect evidences and reports on the Tasmanian Tigers, also extracted DNA from bones of both the Tasmanian Tiger and Tasmanian
Devil that were once found on mainland Australia. Many scientists believe that they would be able to reproduce a clone from the available DNA of a 136-year-old Thylacine specimen conserved in ethanol since 1866. The geneticists of the Australian museum believe they would be able to replicate bits of this wonderful creature from its century-old ancestor.
The evidences from the ancient Aboriginal rock paintings and fossils reveal that the major population of the Thylacine was based mainly throughout Australia and Papua New Guinea. In 1803, when the European settlers arrived in Australia, there was a healthy population of Tasmanian Tigers. They almost looked like large dogs with stripes on their back. They had heavy stiff tails, large heads and were the world's largest marsupial carnivore. Owing to the tiger's unusual structure and shape, the Europeans compared it with the Hyena. Its yellow-brown coat comprises of more than 15 clear dark stripes that ran across its back and base of its tail. This gave it the nickname of a Tiger. The female Tasmanian tiger had a pouch with four teats but unlike other marsupials, the pouch opened at the back.
According to analysis of the skeleton of the Tasmanian Tigers, it has been found that these carnivores mainly relied on stamina than speed in the chase. The stomach of the tigers was muscular and had an ability to distend for allowing the animal to eat huge amount of food at one time. The stomachs were adapted in a way for compensating longer period without eating when the tigers failed to hunt and during food scarcity.
The analysis of the skeletal frame of the tigers reveals that they preferred to single out their preys and exhaust them before killing. Other studies on these extinct animals showed that the animals used to hunt in small family groups. They were nocturnal ambush predators.
The food list of the Tasmanian Tiger included kangaroos, wombats, birds, wallabies and small animals like potoroos and possums. Apart from these animals, the Tasmanian emu formed a favourite meal of the Tasmanian Tiger. However, these tigers were considered a blood drinker in the twentieth century because these carnivores mainly ate the sheep and poultry of the farmers. Their bad reputation led to mass killing of Tigers by humans.
These creatures were shy and mute animals but barked huskily at the time when it was excited and restless. The Tasmanian Tiger loved to stay away from human contacts, which made the early settlers believe that they were timid creatures.
It had a nervous personality compared to other marsupials. When they were captured, they used to die out of fear and shock. They hardly used to put up some resistance before their enemies. They had a high sense of smell that helped them to track their preys and eventually kill them down. They were not very swift in reaction and rather looked lazy and they ran briskly and awkwardly when chased.
It is believed that the fierce and wild hunters of Australia, Dingo is somewhat responsible for the extinction of the Tasmanian tigers. These wild dogs may have competed for food and shelter with the Thylacine resulting in the death of the tigers from areas like Papua New Guinea and Australian mainland.
In the early 18th century, after the European settlers started inhabiting most of the lands in the Australian mainland and in Tasmania, much of the forests and grasslands were cleared so that they could be converted to farmlands. This movement led to a huge clash between the settlers and the native animals who could not cope with the environmental situation, which resulted in the extermination of these fine creatures.
Evidences have been collected which suggest that almost 2000 Tasmanian tigers were killed when a large portal company announced a handsome reward for killing a tiger on its properties. Another possibility is that the Tasmanian tigers could not deal with the significant change in the climate and their living area. Shortage of water and food could be another primary reason of their extinction.
The last Tasmanian tiger was captured in 1933 and was kept in the Hobart Zoo but it died three years later in 1936 making an end to this species. The Australian media became so anxious about the Tasmanian Tigers that they even offered a reward of 1 million dollars for anyone who would find or could prove that they are still alive somewhere in Australia. Many still believe that these tigers can be seen in the ancient forests of Tasmania where this mysterious animal swirls like smoke in its usual habitat. Until now, there have been hundreds of reported sightings of Tasmanian tigers but none has been confirmed. It was concluded by the researchers that only half of the sightings and reports needed investigation and the rest were fake.
The Tasmanian tiger, also known as the Thylacine, has been announced extinct many years ago. Now many geneticists assert that they are capable of recreating a 1 ……………. from
DNA extracted from its bone specimen.Tasmanian tigers belong to marsupials that have a 2 ……………. in common. They looked like big dogs with over 15 dark stripes on the body. When chasing their preys, these animals primarily depended on 3 ……………. to prevail. Their stomach could inflate so they could eat large amount of food each time to 4 ……………. a period lack of food.The diet of the Tasmanian tiger included the 5 ……………. and 6. ……………, and this resulted in mass killing of the tigers by people in the twentieth century. Indeed, these
creatures were shy and timid. They seldom set up some 7 ……………. in front of the foes and used to die out of fear when captured. There were several factors contributing to the extinction of the Tasmanian tiger. Another kind of wild animal called 8 ……………. was its rival for habitats and food sources. The 9 ………... …. destroyed the forests and grassland where the tigers lived, and these native animals could not cope with this change.The last Tasmanian tiger perished in the Hobart Zoo in 10 ……………. and this marked the termination to this species. But many still believe that they are alive. So far lots of 11 ……………. of the tigers have been reported, but none of them has been proven.