Tasmanian Tiger Fact Sheet

Common Name:

Tasmanian Tiger / Tasmanian Wolf

Scientific Name:

Thylacine

Wild Status:

Extinct

Habitat:

Dry forests/grasslands/wetlands

Country:

Australia/Tasmania/New Guinea

Shelter:

Unknown

Life Span:

Estimated 8-12 years in captivity

Size:

39-51 inches long, with a tail of 20-26 inches

Cool Facts:

  • Was the largest carnivorous marsupial of modern times.
  • Had an abdominal pouch similar to a kangaroo.
  • The closest living relatives of the Tasmanian Tiger are the Tasmanian Devil and the Numbat.
  • They had muscular yet weak jaws, that could surprisingly open up to 80 degrees.
  • It is believed to have relied on sight and sound while hunting, and early claims that they had a strong sense of smell has been found to be false.
  • A nocturnal and crepuscular hunter, being most active at dusk and night.

Details:

The Tasmanian Tiger is an extinct marsupial, that was the largest carnivorous marsupial of modern times. They had gone extinct in mainland Australia over 2,000 years ago due to hunting and competition with dingoes, however they survived in Tasmania until the 1930's. The Tasmanian Tiger was an apex predator, and hunted a multitude of prey including wallabies, wombats, and even kangaroos, as well as birds. They were believed to be ambush predators that would prefer to hunt mostly at night. In the 1800's, the Tasmanian Tiger was wrongly persecuted for attacking livestock such as chickens and sheep, and the rising bounties led to their eventual extinction.

Taxonomic Breakdown:

Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Infraclass: Marsupialia Order: Dasyuromorphia Family: Thylacinidae Genus: Thylacinus Species: T. cynocephalus

Conservation & Helping:

The Tasmanian Tiger is currently extinct. They went extinct on mainland Australia roughly 2,000 years ago, however they lived on the island Tasmnia into the 1930's. The extinction is credited to relentless hunting by farmers and bounty hunters. The last known wild Tasmanian Tiger was shot in 1930.

For Teachers and Educators

Tasmanian-Tiger-Fact-Sheet.pdf

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