Portland thylacine sightings Jun 14, 2006 3:26:32 GMT 10
Post by Deleted on Jun 14, 2006 3:26:32 GMT 10
Tasmanian tiger `sightings'
June 13, 2006
TASMANIAN tigers are said to be roaming the outskirts of Portland.
Four sightings of one of the world's most fabled creatures have been reported to an independent researcher in the past three months.
The last sighting was in early May by a Portland resident, Anthony Ersello, who said yesterday he saw the strange dog-like animal sitting in the middle of the Princes Highway on the outskirts of town near the Shell service station.
``I'd been walking home from a party, had one beer and was walking home when I saw it on the road sitting in the middle of the intersection. It kept staring into the distance and then looked at me,'' Mr Ersello said.
The animal had a pointed face, chunky shoulders, stripes and its hind was long and lean.
``I wanted to take a photo with my phone but it had been raining and the wet road made a reflection. I got to about 15 metres then it ran into the bushes.
``I didn't know what it was. It looked like a bit of a dog but it didn't really look like one.''
Another Portland resident, who did not want to be identified, reported two separate thylacine sightings in the past year and believed the tigers regularly crossed farms and pups had been spotted.
The sightings have excited researcher Michael Moss, who is preparing to visit Portland with two infra-red cameras in an attempt to capture the creatures on film.
Mr Moss, who has researched thylacines for a decade, said it was possible the animals had originated from thylacines released into Gippsland early last century.
He said a 1912 management report for Wilsons Promontory suggested the introduction of the tigers, along with other native animals.
However no documentation confirms the animals were released despite the first sightings reported in Gippsland in 1915.
With a spate of sightings in Nelson and Portland's latest claim to fame, Mr Moss said it was possible the introduced species may have moved west.
The Portland sightings are across a two to three kilometre area and Mr Moss said records showed it was not unusual for the animals to come to a town's edge.
This story was found at: the.standard.net.au/articles/2006/06/13/1149964506180.html