The Tasmanian tiger or thylacine is one of the largest marsupial carnivores ever known. They disappeared from mainland Australia even before the Europeans arrived (so for once it’s NOT the Europeans fault entirely) and lived only on Tasmania. A conservation effort began in the early 1900s amid dwindling numbers, so why did the last thylacine in captivity die in 1936? Well, there is only one record of successful captive reproduction at the Melbourne Zoo, but why wasn’t this a priority? And in fact, it is believed that the last captive animal (he was called Benjamin but it’s possible he was in fact a lady) died because he was locked out of his sleeping quarters on a cold night.
Since the extinction was recorded there have been nearly 4000 reports of thylacine sightings. Is it possible that they still exist? Watch below for footage of a 1973 sighting and decide for yourself.