Newly released “thylacine” video inconclusive (UPDATE: Most likely fox)

The thylacine, or Tasmanian wolf or tiger of Tasmania and Australia, was officially declared extinct in 1986. The purported last one died in captivity at the Hobart zoo. Since then, many have suggested it was not extinct.

ARKive species - Thylacine (Thylacinus cynocephalus)

There have been hundreds of sightings since 1936, many of which may have been clear cases of mis-identification.

The Thylacine Awareness Group of Australia (TAGA) has released a video taken by a resident of Adelaide Hills purporting to show a thylacine moving through a garden. The video, however, is grainy and unfocused, so it provides us with no solid conclusion. Take a look.

According to TAGA, five people witnessed the animal in March of 2015 but it returned in February when the video was taken. TAGA will release four more possible Thylacine videos over the coming weeks. They wish to raise funds for the filming and editing of “mini documentaries on Thylacines and other cryptid animals still believed to be roaming the Australian mainland today.”

The video is completely inconclusive and just enough to keep the dream alive. It could conceivably be just a kangaroo or other animal. Hope that the thylacine still exists runs high and exploration continuesHoax videos and enthusiastic witnesses are very common. Wishful thinking abounds. No credible evidence exists. However, even if a few stragglers remain all these decades later, the animal is effectively extinct.

The news has been picked up by the Daily Mail and cryptozoologists. Don’t get your hopes up. There have been so many false positives, the outlook does not look good. As the interviewee in the video notes, we really need a body to be sure. Even then, sad but true, it’s a doomed species.

More on the Thylacine (Thylacinus cynocephalus).

UPDATE: (7-Sept 2016) It’s 80 years since the last known thylacine died in capitivity. It’s hard to be “Happy” about Thylacine Day but there you go. Dr. Darren Naish posted on Twitter regarding this video: “Feeling among experts is that it’s a fox: white tail tuft, gait, suburban habitat = all red flags, alas.”  

  9 comments for “Newly released “thylacine” video inconclusive (UPDATE: Most likely fox)

  1. MOS
    September 6, 2016 at 1:58 PM

    Going by the tail, that’s a fox

  2. TheRook
    September 7, 2016 at 1:41 AM

    I would love it if living thylacines still existed. But I’m not optimistic. Over the decades, the population would needed to have been large enough to sustain itself. However, that would also mean that, at very least, deceased specimens would have turned up periodically, which has not been the case. Although I do think it is plausible a handful thylacines may have survived beyond 1936, I strongly doubt there are any today.

  3. Andrew Wilson
    September 7, 2016 at 9:21 AM

    The other thing is, the Thylacines, not only died out many years ago, but also were mainly native the the southern region of Australia, most notably, a large island south of the mainland, called Tasmania.

    The Thylacine mostly liked the colder, southern regions, and tended to gravitate towards it, though it was not totally out of the realms, that they did indeed make it up as far to the mid north of South Australia to the city area now known as Adelaide, a region that I come from, left and came back to, and now call home.

    There was a reported sighting 400+ kms south of Adelaide, towards Mt Gambier (look it up if you like) around the 1950’s. It was an unconfirmed sighting, and most likely the vision of a drunken farmer at the time, as the report was posted in the local pub.

    As to one being in Adelaide, there has not been a sighting near there, since the 1800’s, that I know of.

    More to boot, there has never been any sightings of scatts found from these animals, nor any kill sites discovered after these ‘sightings’, or any other physical evidence.

    15 or so years ago, in Tasmania, an “Expert” stated that he would provide evidence of a Thylacine, not one, but a pack, in Tasmania. To date, no evidence has been forthcoming. I am still waiting, but not holding my breath.

    The Thylacine really is Australia’s BigFoot.

  4. James R
    September 7, 2016 at 11:48 PM

    doesn’t Australia have it’s own Bigfoot, the Yowie? I guess wherever people live, they want a Bigfoot :). I read a book a long time ago, a ‘skeptic with an open mind’ book, and he laid out a good case that they really cannot exist anywhere but in certain parts of the Pacific Northwest. Bigfoot populations in Oklahoma, Texas … just doesn’t make sense. But people who like Bigfoot and live there are somewhat limited in where they can look, and voila! there are ‘hints’ of Bigfoot in their home state. How convenient.

  5. Trevor D
    September 8, 2016 at 7:49 AM

    Just in the interest of accuracy, Tasmania is actually a state of Australia.

  6. Gareth
    September 15, 2016 at 5:58 PM

    Not a good choice of links for more information on the thylacine. Some of the info there comes from, as well as being signed off by, someone who’s not immune to dubious story telling himself. Not a reliable source.

  7. Gareth
    September 15, 2016 at 6:03 PM

    In fact their remains are from known as far north as New Guinea.

  8. Neil McNab
    September 18, 2016 at 10:56 AM

    These people have obviously been seeing the stripey-bummed fox, a rare animal indeed but definitely a fox, albeit with thylacine-like stripes on its hindquarters. See, I’ve ‘explained’ it for you.

  9. Russian Skeptic
    November 7, 2016 at 11:19 AM

    Grainy as it is, it is definitely a fox video. Just notice the scale. The animal is very small, while from the 1930s video it is apparent that a thylacine would be large.
    So, fox news is fox news.

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