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Extinction's tigers wake-up call

Posted by Rose on May 10, 2013 6:44:23 PM

Tune in to Channel 4's Sunday Brunch programme this weekend between 9.30 and 12.00, to catch the Museum's Richard Sabin discussing a rare Tasmanian tiger specimen which he'll be showing the presenters, Tim and Simon.

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The last Tasmanian tiger pictured here died in Hobart Zoo, Tasmania in 1936.

As Collections Manager of Vertebrates at the Museum, Richard will be highlighting the importance and scientific relevance of our collections to extinction and conservation research and discussing our Extinction exhibition.

 

The Tasmanian tiger, also known as the Tasmanian wolf or thylacine, Thylacinus cynocephalus, is thought to have become extinct in 1936 - the last-known animal lived in Hobart Zoo, Tasmania. It's probable that humans contributed to this Australian marsupial's decline, but the precise reasons for its extinction are not certain.

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Richard Sabin, Collections Manager of Vertebrates, with one of his favourite zoological specimens - now a star attraction in the Treasures Cadogan Gallery - Guy the gorilla that is, not Richard!

 

Richard will also be talking about other exhibits and themes in the Extinction exhibition. One of the focal points of the exhibition is, of course, tiger conservation (Panthera tigris). With less than 5,000 left in the wild, this is an emotive subject, and one that many of us feel strongly about.

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Extinction exhibition's central display: a tiger and cub, with confiscated tiger fur coat.

 

So far, in the exhibition's tiger conservation poll, 68% of visitors have voted 'yes we should save the tiger,' while 26% have voted 'no, we should focus on another species,' and only 6% chose 'maybe, but only if it doesn't cost too much.'  What do you think? Leave a comment below.

 

If you don't catch the programme, it is likely to be on Channel 4's online player, 4oD, but there is also the exhibiiton to visit here and a series of special extinction-related free talks too. The next of these is on Monday, 13 May, and highlights Earth's Biggest Mass Extinction at 14.30. We'll be webcasting Thursday's The Life and Death of the Great Auk so you can watch that one from the comfort of your own home or during an early afternoon coffee break at work.

 

Other guests on the Sunday Brunch programme include former Spice Girl Mel C and comedians Danny Wallace and Jason Manford.

 

Find out more about the Extinction: Not the End of the World? exhibition

 

Browse our Recent extinctions web pages

 

Conservation projects and videos

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