Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Oz Fun Facts and Pics, continued

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From: 


Photo and commentary from the above site, with additional pics and comments from moi.
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The tragic tale of the Tasmanian Tiger


The thylacine, more commonly known as the Tasmanian tiger, was a large carnivorous marsupial. Now believed to be extinct, the thylacine was coloured yellow-brown to grey, with dark stripes across its back from shoulders to tail. Limited to Tasmania in recent times, the discovery of fossils in mainland Australia suggests the thylacine was once widespread across the continent. Thylacines were perceived as a threat to livestock in Tasmania, and the government introduced a bounty in 1888: one pound for each adult scalp and 10 shillings for sub-adults. This, combined with the introduction of dogs, hastened the species' decline and eventual wipeout. The last-known thylacine died in Hobart Zoo on September 7, 1936; this one was photographed in 1920.

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New hope emerges for revival of the “extinct” Tasmanian tiger 
Researchers in North Queensland are launching a new study of Tasmanian tigers, following a series of sightings in Cape York. James Cook University scientists Professor Bill Laurance and Dr Sandra Abell plan to use more than 50 camera traps to survey areas where Tassie tigers have been reportedly seen.
https://www.techly.com.au/2017/04/03/hope-extinct-tasmanian-tiger/
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Wilf Batty with the last thylacine killed in the wild, 1930

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The last known thylacine photographed at Beaumaris Zoo in 1933. The thylacine was able to open its jaws to an unusual extent: up to 80 degrees.

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The Tasmanian coat of arms features thylacines as supporters.

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Australia's iconic thylacine – or Tasmanian tiger – was hunted to death for allegedly killing sheep, but in fact it had such weak jaws that its prey was probably as small as a possum, a new study has found. "Our research has shown that its rather feeble jaw restricted it to catching smaller, more agile prey," says ecologist and doctoral student Marie Attard, of the UNSW Computational Biomechanics Research Group, the lead author of a new paper in the Journal of Zoology.

- 2011 study, University of New South Wales  
https://www.science.unsw.edu.au/news/thylacines-weak-jaws-linked-its-extinction
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Trapped miner pens haunting final letter to wife


Located in Queenstown, Tasmania, the Mount Lyell Mine opened in 1896. In its early years, the mine suffered enough accidents and fatalities to immediately close a mine today. On October 12, 1912, just two weeks after a partial collapse killed two miners and injured several others, a fire broke out in the pump house on the 700-foot level. Only 73 of 170 workers escaped on the first day, and the last survivors were rescued more than 100 hours after their eight-hour shift began. Forty-two men perished, one leaving this haunting note to his wife: "Dear Agnes. – I will say good-bye. Sure I will not see you again any more. I am pleased to have made a little provision for you and poor little Lorna. Be good to our little darling. My mate, Len Burke, is done, and poor old V. and Driver too. Good-bye, with love to all. Your loving husband, Joe McCarthy."

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A further story about the above mine tragedy, published in the South Australian Advertiser on 16 October 1912:
Deeds of heroism and superb courage are many in connection with the disaster. The more notable are the cases of Messrs. S. Brav, R. Treverton, R. Lonsdale, Wm. John Bolton (shift boss) and Thos. Gays. These, with others, were on the plat on Saturday, and it was learned early this morning that they could have got out, but that they saw a number of men staggering in the smoke almost overcome, and instead of saving themselves they calmly returned to succor as best they might those who were in a bad plight. Mr. Bolton was up to No. 2 drive twice, but returned to look for his mates. Mr. Gays rose to the height of absolute heroism. The cage was ready to come up, when he saw a married man on the plat. He calmly stepped out of the cage into the blinding smoke and sent it up the shaft. That was the last cage that left.
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Funeral procession
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Unsettling memorial commemorates disastrous Australian expedition


In 1860, Robert O'Hara Burke and William John Wills led an expedition to attempt the first south-north crossing of the continent, from Melbourne to the Gulf of Carpentaria. Eighteen men, with 20 camels and over 20 tonnes of provisions, set out in August. Reaching Cooper Creek in December, Burke and Wills started north with two others, following the Corella River into the Gulf, only to discover that vast salt marshes separated them from the sea. When a rescue party eventually tracked them down in September the following year, King was the sole survivor. The expedition was the most expensive in Australian history, costing well over £60,000 and seven lives. The Face Tree at Cooper Creek is one of four memorials commemorating the expedition. John Dick and his wife Minnie Ghyn Thompson carved Burke's face into the tree in November 1898.

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2 comments:

  1. WOW! amazing stories. I didn't know all this. These stories bring the whole pciture alive in mind. The accompaying pictures are also amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  2. a useful article for history lovers and you have explained it beautifully with supporting pictures which are amazing.

    ReplyDelete