Australian Night Parrot Found Alive After Thought Extinct for 140 Years

(p. D3) Depending on whom you ask, the Tasmanian tiger or thylacine has either been extinct for nearly a century or has been just really good at hiding.

Now new research examining hundreds of reports from more than a century shows there is a good chance the thylacine may have persisted for a few decades longer in the most remote parts of Tasmania.

“There are pockets where the species could have maintained small populations,” said Barry Brook, a professor of environmental sustainability at the University of Tasmania.

One of the problems with the thylacine, and extinction in general, is it’s hard to prove something is truly gone. Australia’s night parrot for instance, was thought to be extinct for 140 years until its recent rediscovery.

. . .

For a study published . . . [online on March 18, 2023 [sic]] in the journal Science of the Total Environment, Dr. Brook’s team studied 1,237 Tasmanian tiger reports from 1910 onward. It classified these reports in terms of credibility.

For the full story see:

Joshua Rapp Learn. “When Did Tasmanian Tigers Actually Disappear?” The New York Times (Tuesday, May 2, 2023 [sic]): D3.

(Note: ellipses, and bracketed date, added.)

(Note: the online version of the story has the date April 7, 2023 [sic], and has the title “New Support for Some Extinct Tasmanian Tiger Sightings.”)

The study co-authored by Dr. Brook and mentioned above is:

Brook, Barry W., Stephen R. Sleightholme, Cameron R. Campbell, Ivan Jarić, and Jessie C. Buettel. “Resolving When (and Where) the Thylacine Went Extinct.” Science of The Total Environment 877 (June 2023): 162878.

See also:

Ham, Anthony. “‘Ghost Bird’ Haunts Those Searching for It.” The New York Times, Jan. 4, 2022, D1.

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