The last known Thylacinus cynocephalus in existence died in 1936, at Hobart Zoo. This photo is, as far as I can ascertain, that animal, and I think it dates from 1933. *
Most commonly known as the Tasmanian Tiger, because of the stripes, it’s sometimes called the Tasmanian Wolf, as it has dog-like features. In fact, it was neither, but a marsupial that had evolved to fill a similar ecological niche to those creatures.
My first attempt, with brighter colouration, based on contemporary paintings. I redid this photo after a comment (see below) suggested more subdued colours. I prefer my new version, but I can’t be certain the old one is wrong. The commenter, Gareth, has provided some information that may help though. First, a link to a comprehensive website about the Tasmanian Tiger, from which these pictures of skins come:
These pictures would seem to confirm that there was a fair bit of variation (though it has been pointed out that the pelts are in poor condition which affects the colour) and this painting from 1817, by John Lewin has a definite red tinge to it, which may have been picked up by later artists, and exaggerated.
So it looks like either of my versions could still be right.
Except Gareth also gave me a name, Alison Reid. Alison was the main keeper for the Tasmanian tigers and de facto curator of the zoo when the last of them died, and described them as being ‘dun’ or ‘rabbit’ coloured. Since the animal in the photo is one of those she was most familiar with, I think the colours I used in the new version are most likely correct. There may have been other more brightly coloured Tasmanian Tigers, but probably not in Hobart Zoo.
Original B&W photo.
* Correction: It seems that this photo was probably taken in 1928, and is of a juvenile male that died the day after it was photographed.