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The occurrence of gigantic marsupials in Tasmania

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Noetling, Fritz (1911) The occurrence of gigantic marsupials in Tasmania. Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania. pp. 124-133. ISSN 0080-4703

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Abstract

It had hitherto been generally believed that the
gigantic marsupials were restricted to the continent
of Australia, and did not occur in Tasmania. Jack and
Etheridge (see footnotes) mention their wide distribution on the continent,
and Professor Stirling is of the opinion "that
this great marsupial appears to have had an immense range,
and to have probably wandered over the whole Continent
of Australia." R. M. Johnston, who is better acquainted
with the geology of Tasmania than anybody else, states
that "in Tasmania no remains of the extinct marsupials,
such as Diprotodon, Nototherium, and Thylacoleo, have as.
yet been found either in the ossiferous cavern breccias or in
the older alluvial beds."
It seems rather strange that nobody took the view that
remains of such animals ought also to occur in Tasmania.
Howitt had already, in 1898, expressed the opinion that
Tasmania was connected with the mainland in geologically
recent times, and Hedley in 1903, holds the same view.
Conseqviently, the discovery of remains of a gigantic
marsupial in Tasmania should not have created the general
surpi-ise they did. When, in 1910, the news that bones of
a gigantic marsupial had been discovered in the Mowbray
swamp, near Smithton, became known, the discovery was
at first somewhat discredited. However, confirmation soon
came, and the remains were purchased by the Launceston
Museum from their discoverer, Mr. Lovett. Mr.
Scott, the Curator of the Museum, has since described them
under the name of Nototherium tasmaniense, but I am
somewhat doubtful whether a new species is justified.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Royal Society of Tasmania, Van Diemens Land, VDL, Hobart Town, natural sciences, proceedings, records
Journal or Publication Title: Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
Page Range: pp. 124-133
ISSN: 0080-4703
Collections: Royal Society Collection
Royal Society Collection > Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
Additional Information:

In 1843 the Horticultural and Botanical Society of Van Diemen's Land was founded and became the Royal Society of Van Diemen's Land for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science in 1844. In 1855 its name changed to Royal Society of Tasmania for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science. In 1911 the name was shortened to Royal Society of Tasmania.

Date Deposited: 22 May 2013 06:18
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2017 01:07
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