Jump to content
Join the Unexplained Mysteries community today! It's free and setting up an account only takes a moment.
- Sign In or Create Account -
Carnoferox

Preprint puts thylacine extinction in 90's

Recommended Posts

Carnoferox

A new, non-peer-reviewed preprint has estimated that thylacine extinction could have occurred in the late 1990's or early 2000's based on a dataset of post-1936 sightings. Of course, I am very skeptical of the veracity of these sightings, which would negatively affect their conclusions if they turned out to be hoaxes or misidentifications. I am very curious to hear the opinions of @oldrover and any other thylacine researchers on this study.

https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.01.18.427214v1.full

  • Like 5
  • Confused 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
Habitat

A test has been developed recently to sample watercourses for traces of Thylacine DNA, that would appear to be a new angle that might help determine the status of it. I'd be amazed if a positive was returned.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Peter B

Back in the 1980s I met a Tasmanian biologist who was an expert in Australian marsupials, and I asked him about the possibility of thylacine survival. He thought it was extremely unlikely, based on the lack of habitat. Carnivores need plenty of land to hunt over, and he reckoned there simply wasn't enough untouched habitat for a viable population to survive.

Still, never say never, and the DNA test described by Habitat is an excellent tool for further investigation.

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oldrover
16 hours ago, Carnoferox said:

A new, non-peer-reviewed preprint has estimated that thylacine extinction could have occurred in the late 1990's or early 2000's based on a dataset of post-1936 sightings. Of course, I am very skeptical of the veracity of these sightings, which would negatively affect their conclusions if they turned out to be hoaxes or misidentifications. I am very curious to hear the opinions of @oldrover and any other thylacine researchers on this study.

https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.01.18.427214v1.full

Hi, hope you're well.  I only know one of the authors and am working with them on another unrelated project at the moment, but we haven't really discussed this paper. I was sort of aware this was going on though.

I'm don't ever research post 1930s in terms of sightings, but obviously I'm aware of some and I have to admit that not all of the evidence for survival past the 1930s is all bad. As you'll know what people think a tiger looked like and the reality are completely different things. The reality is very obscure and I wouldn't expect many people to know it, yet I have seen very convincing descriptions. One in particular is as astounding as it is recent. But, as ever, we have a disconnect between what might be suggested by the eye-witness sightings, and what all the other evidence is saying. I know which I think is the more reliable. 

I keep coming back to this: Nic Haygarth established the economic unfeasibility of targeted thylacine trapping, and we definitely do know that every single one of the traceable captures of the 20s and 30s were made as by-catch form fur-trapping, as are practically, if not all, other captures from every other era including that of the much over-hyped bounty scheme.  This means there was never a period when thylacines were afforded any actual protection, and they were subject to the same pressures in 1910 when the bounty scheme finished than in 1899 when it at its height, similarly no less in 1937 than in 1935 before full protection came in. In fact it would have been worse each year as the scale of fur-trapping increased significantly in the early 20th century.

While  thylacines trickled into Zoos during the 1920s, far , far fewer than the current literature would have you believe, the number of legally trapped game animal skins alone could and did run into seven figures. So despite all that trapping no high value/prestige confirmable thylacines appeared in a snare after at the absolute latest 1931. That's not terribly encouraging is it. 

 

Edited by oldrover
  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oldrover
14 hours ago, Habitat said:

A test has been developed recently to sample watercourses for traces of Thylacine DNA, that would appear to be a new angle that might help determine the status of it. I'd be amazed if a positive was returned.

You and me both.

 

14 hours ago, Peter B said:

Back in the 1980s I met a Tasmanian biologist who was an expert in Australian marsupials, and I asked him about the possibility of thylacine survival. He thought it was extremely unlikely, based on the lack of habitat. Carnivores need plenty of land to hunt over, and he reckoned there simply wasn't enough untouched habitat for a viable population to survive.

Still, never say never, and the DNA test described by Habitat is an excellent tool for further investigation.

Habitat is a tricky issue with thylacines. I'm not convinced we've got it right as where they preferred to live. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tom1200

Based on a greater number of eye witnesses, and with the same absence of any actual evidence, Bigfoot is alive and thriving.  And UFOs abduct and probe four million Americans every year.

Or am I placing too much faith in mathematical modelling?

  • Haha 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Eldorado

Tasmanian Tigers Could Still Have Been Alive in the 2000s, Scientists Argue

Of all the animals to have gone extinct since humans were around to notice, perhaps none loom as large in our collective consciousness as the thylacine, commonly known as the Tasmanian tiger. Unlike the dodo or the woolly mammoth, the thylacine is still lit, however dimly, in living memory. In fact, since the last known member of the species died in a zoo in 1936, supposed sightings of the creature have continued to be reported at a steady clip, including one just last week.

Full Gizmodo article: Link

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nobu
On 1/27/2021 at 8:01 AM, oldrover said:

Hi, hope you're well.  I only know one of the authors and am working with them on another unrelated project at the moment, but we haven't really discussed this paper. I was sort of aware this was going on though.

I'm don't ever research post 1930s in terms of sightings, but obviously I'm aware of some and I have to admit that not all of the evidence for survival past the 1930s is all bad. As you'll know what people think a tiger looked like and the reality are completely different things. The reality is very obscure and I wouldn't expect many people to know it, yet I have seen very convincing descriptions. One in particular is as astounding as it is recent. But, as ever, we have a disconnect between what might be suggested by the eye-witness sightings, and what all the other evidence is saying. I know which I think is the more reliable. 

I keep coming back to this: Nic Haygarth established the economic unfeasibility of targeted thylacine trapping, and we definitely do know that every single one of the traceable captures of the 20s and 30s were made as by-catch form fur-trapping, as are practically, if not all, other captures from every other era including that of the much over-hyped bounty scheme.  This means there was never a period when thylacines were afforded any actual protection, and they were subject to the same pressures in 1910 when the bounty scheme finished than in 1899 when it at its height, similarly no less in 1937 than in 1935 before full protection came in. In fact it would have been worse each year as the scale of fur-trapping increased significantly in the early 20th century.

While  thylacines trickled into Zoos during the 1920s, far , far fewer than the current literature would have you believe, the number of legally trapped game animal skins alone could and did run into seven figures. So despite all that trapping no high value/prestige confirmable thylacines appeared in a snare after at the absolute latest 1931. That's not terribly encouraging is it. 

 

What was the human population density of humans in their known habitat in the 20-30s? If you don’t know off the top of your head- don’t worry about looking it up. I’m just curious. I guess I don’t know how sparsely populated that area of Australia was or now is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oldrover
12 hours ago, Nobu said:

What was the human population density of humans in their known habitat in the 20-30s? If you don’t know off the top of your head- don’t worry about looking it up. I’m just curious. I guess I don’t know how sparsely populated that area of Australia was or now is.

During that the early 1920s they were found in the South-West, North-West, and some very limited suggestion for them in the middle around Lake Gordon. I don't think they weren't there but the evidence is a bit vague.

After 1923 there's no more firm evidence in the S-W, N-W ends in 1930. Population wise,I don't think we can say but certainly in the times mentioned the population of both areas would have been significantly higher than today, largely because of first timber then mining. In the S-W you had an entire township called Adamsfield that isn't there anymore, plus the settlements of Tyenna and Fitzgerald (now Maydena) were much larger.

In the N-W you had the mining town of Magnet, where one of the men who captured the last individual ran the pub. It sounds like a handful of thylacines from this era were deliberately caught alive in the N-W, but this is the exception, thylacines were hardly ever targeted deliberately, almost all captures from all eras were by-catch of fur trapping. And there was mass trapping all across the State at this time. 

I think people might imagine that they hung around in the very remote regions of the West Coast, and they probably did, but many of the captures are actually from around Waratah. Question is how many trappers ventured into the far west?  

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nobu
9 hours ago, oldrover said:

During that the early 1920s they were found in the South-West, North-West, and some very limited suggestion for them in the middle around Lake Gordon. I don't think they weren't there but the evidence is a bit vague.

After 1923 there's no more firm evidence in the S-W, N-W ends in 1930. Population wise,I don't think we can say but certainly in the times mentioned the population of both areas would have been significantly higher than today, largely because of first timber then mining. In the S-W you had an entire township called Adamsfield that isn't there anymore, plus the settlements of Tyenna and Fitzgerald (now Maydena) were much larger.

In the N-W you had the mining town of Magnet, where one of the men who captured the last individual ran the pub. It sounds like a handful of thylacines from this era were deliberately caught alive in the N-W, but this is the exception, thylacines were hardly ever targeted deliberately, almost all captures from all eras were by-catch of fur trapping. And there was mass trapping all across the State at this time. 

I think people might imagine that they hung around in the very remote regions of the West Coast, and they probably did, but many of the captures are actually from around Waratah. Question is how many trappers ventured into the far west?  

Thanks. This is a subject that interests me greatly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oldrover
On 2/10/2021 at 3:43 AM, Nobu said:

Thanks. This is a subject that interests me greatly.

No problem. We've a book coming out next year and I'm writing this topic up at the moment. 

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nobu
2 hours ago, oldrover said:

No problem. We've a book coming out next year and I'm writing this topic up at the moment. 

You post the link I’ll buy it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
Coyote Speaks
On 2/11/2021 at 7:05 PM, oldrover said:

No problem. We've a book coming out next year and I'm writing this topic up at the moment. 

Can't wait to buy it and read it. Your research and writing has always been a true joy to read.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oldrover
On 3/2/2021 at 7:53 PM, Coyote Speaks said:

Can't wait to buy it and read it. Your research and writing has always been a true joy to read.

Oh thank you very much. I'll let you know. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Earl.Of.Trumps
Posted (edited)

I have no problem imagining that this creature, thylacine, still exists. Check this out:

"A rare species of bee, last seen a hundred years ago, has been found alive in Queensland, Australia. The species, 
Pharohylaeus lactiferus, is native to the area, but was last recorded in 1923 and only six had ever been found."

Also, in 2020, three new species of shark were found off the coast of New Zealand. They all glow in the dark, too.

Also, several people in the UK have reported seeing the black panther, long thought of as being extinct.

I think people just can't swallow our pride and understand that "we" are not as smart as we think we are. :hmm:

Edited by Earl.Of.Trumps

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.