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Friday, 9 February, 2001, 15:48 GMT
Tasmanian tiger on show in Sydney
Tasmanian tiger
The Tasmanian tiger became extinct in 1936
The extinct Tasmanian tiger, that still raises much interest with continued "sightings" annually, can now be seen for real, or at least in an exhibition in Sydney.

The Australian Museum in Sydney will hold a major exhibition on the wolf-sized, striped marsupial to "look forward and learn from the mistakes of the past".


There have been and still are major attempts to find it but... I think we have to say for all intents and purposes, [it's] gone

Museum official
Hunted to extinction more than 60 years ago, the animal - also known as the Thylacine - has represented one of the casualties of European colonisation to some.

It now holds an almost mythical status, with about a dozen people claiming to see it in Tasmania every year.

However, Patrick Silmer-Sanke, the museum's deputy director, said any alleged sightings have more to do with alcohol than authenticity.

Hunted extensively

Tasmanian tiger
The last Tasmanian tiger was called Benjamin
The fate of the Tasmanian Tiger was sealed as early as the 1840s when the first of numerous bounties was offered.

Feared by European settlers and a threat to sheep, it was hunted extensively, and by 1936, less than a century later, the last known Thylacine died in a zoo in Hobart.

An icon of the animal, a cousin of the Tasmanian Devil, is used to represent the Tasmanian state in Australia.

A Sydney-based team has hopes of cloning the animal from a preserved pup, a baby Thylacine found in alcohol, by using the specimen's DNA.

As well as the "pickled pup", the exhibition also has film footage and photographs of the animal.

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14 May 99 | Sci/Tech
Tasmanian tiger may growl again
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