Thoughts From A Real Thylacine Researcher!

The thylacine Thylacinus cynocephalus was a large, heavily built, carnivorous marsupial with short, dense, tan coloured fur and incomplete, dark brown bands across the back, rump and base of the tail. The scientific name translates as the “dog-headed pouched one” and like canids (dogs), the thylacine was a digitigrade quadruped . Superficially the teeth, head, neck and forequarters appeared very canine-like making one old, parochial name, the “pouched wolf” perhaps more appropriate than the usual “Tasmanian tiger”, although the latter is a clear winner in both imagery and marketing. There were however, obvious differences with the placental canids, aside from the marsupial pouch.

The thylacine tibia  was relatively long and the tarsus  short with pads extended up the tarsus to the ankle, unlike the haired tarsi of canids. Also with padded tarsi, the thylacine’s relatives, the Tasmanian devil Sarcophilus harrisii and quolls Dasyurus spp., use the structures for extra grip while climbing, much as does a human or bear but there is no evidence thylacines did likewise. Toes of thylacines were relatively small with large plantar pads, the feet having plantar:single digit pad area ratios of about 9:1, compared with 4:1 with most canids. Claws were not retractile. When walking the thylacine had a languid motion with a distinctive gait (pattern of footprints) but when running at moderate speed was said to have a somewhat disjointed, stiff motion, indeed once reported as a “shambling canter”. Although not especially fast, the species was reportedly dogged in pursuit of prey, mainly using scent. Ears were rather bear like, of moderate size as were the eyes, with no particular adaptations for nocturnal habits. Thylacines could jump such as might a heavy dog and swim but could not climb.

Read the full article here: https://beta.capeia.com/zoology/2016/09/07/thylacine-the-improbable-tiger

About Andrew

Co-founder & lead investigator of Paranormal Encounters. I’ve experienced the paranormal all my life, having encountered ghosts, angels and demons. I live in a haunted house and when not exploring and researching the unknown, I enjoy single malt Scotch whisky & potato chips (though not necessarily at the same time).