THYLACINE SIGHTINGS 1953 - 1990

CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS

CONCLUSION

The table below shows the ratings we have calculated on the basis of Smith's System. Note that each of the sighters was a known and respected member of the local community. Note also that 8 of the 10 sightings rated very good while the remaining 2 rated good.

RATINGS FOR SIGHTINGS WITHIN THIS REPORT

Sighting Identification Points Rating
3* 50 very good
4* 50 very good
1* 49 very good
2* 49 very good
8 43 very good
5 38 very good
6 38 very good
7 37 good
9* 28 good
10* 28 good

*double sightings

From this appraisal we suggest that the Thylacine probably existed in the Panama Forest and adjacent areas from the years 1970 - 90. We also suggest that the Thylacine may still exist in forested areas of North East Tasmania.

Those who gave evidence for this Report were known and respected members of the local community. They all had knowledge of native fauna and flora. Each one of them was convinced they saw a Thylacine. We discovered no reason why the interviewees would speak anything but the truth as they remembered it. We contend there is a strong correlation between the ratings according to Smith's System and the story as told by the sighters.

We hold it significant that several of the sightings occurred in a very small area at roughly the same time. For example, Sightings 1, 2, 5, and 7 occurred in the Underwood area 1980 - c1982. Sightings 8, 9, and 10 occurred in almost the same location on Ferny Hill Road in 1988 - '89. The fact that none of the parties was aware of the other sightings is important.

It is also significant that three of the sightings were double sightings, ie. 1 & 2, 3& 4, 9 & 10. Note also that none of the double sightings was aware of the others.

Whether the Thylacine was a permanent dweller in the Panama Forest and adjacent areas of North East Tasmania is unclear. Nevertheless, whether migratory or permanent, the value of the native forest to the welfare of the animal is obvious.

The rarity of reported sightings suggests two things

  1. that people were afraid of ridicule
  2. that the Thylacine was rare.

We know the fear of ridicule is true as 8 of the interviewees mentioned this specifically. Indeed, this Report could not have been compiled were it not for our assurance of public anonymity. The fact that 8 of the sighters had not told other people (1 and 2 are exceptions) and that of the 8, all requested anonymity in the Report indicates that none of the 8 was seeking notoriety

The possibility that the animal may still exist as a rare and endangered species underlines the importance of preserving contiguous native forest areas for the animal's protection.

The writers contend that the evidence in this Report is a clear indication of the Thylacine's probable existence in the Panama and adjacent forests at the time of this Report. We also contend that the Thylacine may continue to exist in the Panama and adjacent forests.

Thylacine Sightings Report Page17

RECOMMENDATIONS

  1. the Thylacine should no longer be classified extinct
  2. the Thylacine be declared a rare and endangered species
  3. a moratorium be called on all capital gains programmes in relation to the remaining areas of native forest in North East Tasmania, specifically the Panama Ridge and adjacent areas
  4. an immediate halt should be called on the activities of Forestry Tasmania and other consortiums in clear felling native forests for wood chips
  5. an immediate halt be called to the replacement of native forests with Radiata Pine and Blue Gum plantations.

Next - Smith's Rating System for Thylacine Sightings

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