Animal protection organizations have been releasing Tasmanian devils into the wild in Australia in recent months. It has been about 3,000 years since those animals roamed in the wild there. The wolf-like dingos were believed to be responsible for the hungry marsupial genocide at the time.
In total, 26 Tasmanian devils were released in a nature reserve north of the city of Sydney. Caretakers will not feed the marsupials, but they will be protected by a fence. This increases their chances of survival. A first group of 15 devils was already released in March and that turned out to be a success. An additional 11 were added in September. That reports the British public broadcaster BBC.
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Selected for reproduction
Animals were carefully selected for visual reproduction. The Tasmanian devil’s mating season continues in February. The conservation organizations plan to release an additional 40 specimens over the next two years in Australia’s 400-acre conservation area. It is intended that over time they will be able to survive outside the fence in the Australian wilderness.
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Extinct 3,000 years ago
The Tasmanian devil has been extinct on the Australian mainland for some 3,000 years. Until recently, the voracious predatory marsupial was only found on the nearby island of Tasmania. There are currently about 25,000 devils living in the wild. In 1990 there were still 150,000. The dramatic relapse is caused by a deadly oral cancer that is still circulating in animals today. Currently, the Tasmanian devil is considered an endangered species.
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Tasmanian devils can scream very shrill. The females weigh up to 8 kilograms, the males up to 12 kilograms. They are known for getting along particularly poorly with other animal species. The animals are no fiddly with each other either: they fight over carcasses, which they crush with the force of their jaws. They are able to crack bones smoothly. However, people need not fear anything from the Tasmanian devil. It is mainly smaller animals that fall prey to the carnivorous marsupials.
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