The Elusive Thylacine Apart from the town's timber heritage, Nannup is also famous for the "Nannup Tiger" a Thylacine, believed to be extinct. The Thylacine
(or most commonly known as the Tasmanian Tiger) is a carnivorous marsupial and was native to Australia until
the arrival of the dingo. The tiger is described as a striped wolf with a dog's head.
The tiger has not been officially seen on the mainland for over two hundred years, but survived in
Tasmania as late as the 1900's (as the dingo was never introduced there). The last known Thylacine named
"Benjamin", died in the Hobart Zoo in 1936. Following Benjamin's death the State of Tasmania put the tiger on it's
official Coat of Arms.
Evidence of the creatures existence in the area were discovered, when Thylacine bones were
unearthed at the Mammoth Cave , near Margaret River. The bones are on display inside the cave, but unfortunately they date back
thousands of years.
SightingsThe Nannup Tiger has become local folklore and the legend has been kept alive with
intermittent sightings of the creature. The most recent sighting was in the late 1990's, by a Department of
Conservation & Land Management (CALM) officer. Some of the local websites in the area have even offered rewards
to anyone who can produce a photograph of the elusive beast. However some locals, having had enough of the
attention the tiger was attracting, reportedly painted stripes on a sheep, added a tail and left it in a paddock.
The town erected a statue to the elusive creature which stands proudly near the tourist centre.
Things You Need To Know?Okay, if you are thinking of trying to spot the elusive tiger here
are a few things you need to know. Firstly, it must have the following, a head like a dog, body like a wolf,
distinctive dark stripes running down its back and a pouch.
If you happen to catch one, don't attempt to pat it, as they have extremely strong jaws, in fact
the jaw can open to an angle of 120 degrees. If you don't believe me check this out . I would also be watching my back if I were you, as I guarantee if you've found one, its
mate won't be too far away. Lets be realistic, it couldn't possibly survive all this time without a breeding
partner! And it would be none too happy that its mate has been caught. Where would it find another tiger?
It has forty teeth but I suggest you don't try counting them. Though You will probably be able to
count them when it opens its 120 degree jaws!
It isn't a very fast runner, but has a slow metabolic rate, which gives it enough endurance to hunt
its prey for hours. So I suggest only very fit people need look. Evidently this aggressive marsupial is a rather
picky eater too. Once it has hunted its prey, to near exhaustion, it will crush the preys throat with those
powerful jaws and then crush the animal's ribcage so it can dine on the heart, lungs and liver.
So, if you find one before it finds you, let us know.
Other creatures I recommend you don't pat are the stingrays of Hamelin Bay and the stonefish of Shark Bay.
Interesting Links To The Thylacine
The Thylacine Museum