There are few things as sad as when a beautiful animal goes extinct and walks this world no more. We’ve looked at some examples of animals that face this threat, but today we’re going to look at tattoos of an extinct animal for the first time. Well, that’s not true because we’ve definitely run pieces on dinosaurs. But rather, we’ll be looking at a beautiful animal that no longer exists because of the actions of our species. So strap in and prepare to be bummed out as we take a look at Tasmanian tiger tattoos.
The thylacine, or Tasmanian tiger, was the largest known carnivorous marsupial. It got the name Tasmanian tiger because of its stripes, but the appearance of the thylacine more closely resembled a wolf than a tiger. Thus, it is sometimes referred to as the Tasmanian wolf.
Like all marsupials, the thylacines had pouches, but are unique for the fact that the males also had pouches. These were used for retraction of their scrotal sack, a fact we are surely not making up. Europeans often compared them to hyenas in appearance and demeanor.
Scientists estimate that the creature went extinct on the Australian mainland around 2000 years ago, but it managed to survive on the island of Tasmania until the 1930s. Hunting by humans is most often blamed for the extinction, but diseases, the introduction of dogs, and loss of habitat may have also played their parts. Sightings of the animal are still reported on occasion, but none of them have ever been verified.
The last captive Tasmanian tiger, known as Benjamin, died in the Hobart Zoo in 1936 due to straight up neglect. By 1982, no sighting of the species had been confirmed in 50 years and it was declared officially extinct.
The animal lives on through Tasmanian tiger tattoos, some of which we’ve assembled for your viewing pleasure today. While you will probably never see a live thylacine, at least you’ve got these tattoos to remind you of what you’re missing.
Don’t these Tasmanian tiger tattoos make you wish you could find some of the creature’s DNA and bring it back to life ala Jurassic Park? If you happen to achieve such a goal, let us know, as we’ve been wanting to do a similar procedure on our dignity.