London Zoo (continued):
Thylacines displayed at the London Zoo (1850 - 1931)
N Date of arrival A/J/P Sex Captured by Source (dealer) Capture locality Sold / exchanged Date of Departure Date of death Ref FN
1 14/5/1850 J M Unknown snarer (Nov 1849) Dr. J. Grant (purchaser) St Patricks River N/A N/A 25/9/1853 1 1
2 14/5/1850 A F Unknown snarer (May 1849) Dr. J. Grant (purchaser) St Patricks River N/A N/A 13/5/1857 1 1
3 9/4/1856 A M  Mr. Martin Mr. Martin Unknown locality Dr. Peters (Director) Berlin Zoo 7/6/1864 Berlin
4 2/5/1863 A F Mr. Thomas Hurst [son of] (Sep 1862) Dr. J. Grant (purchaser) Pipers River N/A N/A 23/1/1870 2
- N/A P M Mr. Thomas Hurst [son of] (Sep 1862) Dr. J. Grant (purchaser) Pipers River - - Died in transit 2
- N/A P F Mr. Thomas Hurst [son of] (Sep 1862) Dr. J. Grant (purchaser) Pipers River - - Died in transit 2
5 2/5/1863 P M Mr. Thomas Hurst [son of] (Sep 1862) Dr. J. Grant (purchaser) Pipers River N/A N/A 17/4/1865 2
6 14/11/1884 A M Unknown snarer Dr. A. B. Crowther [purchaser]
(Sept 1884)
Unknown locality N/A N/A 5/2/1890 3
7 14/11/1884 A F Unknown snarer Dr. A. B. Crowther [purchaser]
(Sept 1884)
Unknown locality N/A N/A 2/4/1893 3 4
8 19/3/1886 (in transit) A M Hill Dudley Le Souëf (Melbourne Zoo) Montagu
(Nov 1885)
Paris 15/4/1886 Paris (27/3/1891)
9 19/3/1886 (in transit) A F Evans & Hill Dudley Le Souëf (Melbourne Zoo) South Downs, Arthur River Paris 15/4/1886 Paris (6/2/1891)
10 30/6/1888 (in transit) A F Unknown snarer Dudley Le Souëf (Melbourne Zoo) Unknown locality N/A Died shortly after arrival 7/7/1888
11 30/6/1888 (in transit) A M Unknown snarer Dudley Le Souëf (Melbourne Zoo) Unknown locality W. Cross (Liverpool) 31/8/1888 Liverpool
12 28/4/1891 A F Unknown snarer E. Le Souef (Melbourne Zoo) Unknown locality N/A N/A 26/9/1891 8
13 28/4/1891 A M Unknown snarer E. Le Souef (Melbourne Zoo) Unknown locality N/A N/A 5/7/1894 8
14 19/3/1901 A M Unknown snarer C. Hagenbeck (dealer) Unknown locality N/A N/A 1/2/1902
15 26/3/1902 J M Unknown snarer William Jamrach (dealer) Unknown locality N/A N/A 17/1/1906 5
16 12/3/1909 A F Unknown snarer Mrs. M. Roberts [Beaumaris Zoo] (21/01/1909) Dee N/A N/A 5/6/1914 4 6
- N/A A M City Park Zoo Beaumaris Zoo (21/01/1909) Unknown - - Died in transit 4
17 18/4/1910 J M G. Wainwright Mrs. M. Roberts [Beaumaris Zoo] (1/3/1910) Woolnorth N/A N/A 20/11/1914 5
18 21/11/1910 A M A. Blackwood Mrs. M. Roberts [Beaumaris Zoo] (30/9/1910) Fingal
(in May)
N/A N/A 25/12/1914 6
- 21/11/1910 J F G Wainwright Mrs. M. Roberts [Beaumaris Zoo] (30/9/1910) Woolnorth - - Dead on arrival 6
19 21/11/1911 J M G. Wainwright Mrs. M. Roberts [Beaumaris Zoo] (28/9/1911) Woolnorth Bronx Zoo (New York) 10/1/1912 New York
20 26/1/1926 A F James Harrison (dealer) [Unknown snarer 8/1924] G. Bruce Chapman 
(dealer) [Beaumaris Zoo] (Domain)
Unknown locality N/A N/A 9/8/1931 7
- N/A A F James Harrison (dealer) (Unknown snarer) G. Bruce Chapman 
(dealer) [Beaumaris Zoo] (Domain)
Unknown locality - - Died in transit 7
Based on Edwards, J., 1996. "List of thylacines (Thylacinus cynocephalus) at London Zoo".
Unpublished notes. Zoological Society of London.
A/J/P Adult / Juvenile / Pup
Family group
Dead on arrival / died in transit
Short dates are formatted Day/Month/Year.
References: 1. Examiner 30/3/1940 p. 12; 2. The Cornwall Chronicle 14/1/1863 p. 4 & Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser 1/1/1863 p. 3; 3. Daily Telegraph (Launceston) 26/9/1884 p. 2; 4: Mercury 7/10/1908 p. 4 & Examiner 21/4/1909 p. 4; 5. Mercury 28/5/1910 p. 4; 6. Examiner 21/6/1910 p. 3 & Mercury 5/10/1910 p. 4; 7. Advocate 28/1/1926 p. 3 & Daily Mercury 14/4/1926 p. 9; 8. Argus 11/8/1891 p. 7.
Footnotes: 1. Dissected by Crisp (Crisp 1855 & 1860); 2. Longest lived captive specimen [8 years, 220 days (Moeller 1997)]; 3. Beddard's dissection (Beddard 1891); 4. Record for longest living female in captivity (8 years 139 days); 5. Dissected by Beddard (Beddard 1908). 6. In death, female #16, along with a male (probably #17) became the subject of several papers by Pocock (1914, 1921, 1926) in which he describes the external characteristics of the thylacine with illustrations of the head with facial vibrissae (1914, 1926), rhinarium, ear, fore and hind feet (1926) and the marsupium (1921, 1926).

Note: The Mercury newspaper of the 5th December 1891 records the locality of capture of a thylacine destined for display at the London Zoo: 

"A fine specimen of the Tasmanian tiger is to be seen on board the barque Ethel.  It was sent down by the P.S. Monarch from New Norfolk by Mr. T. Allwright.  It is understood that the animal is to be sent to England.  A number of opossums and wallabies are also on the vessel bound for the Old Country.  The Ethel will maintain the reputation of her predecessor in taking home Tasmanian animals to the Old Country".

Unfortunately, the thylacine on board the Ethel does not appear to have survived the sea voyage to England, as there are no records of a thylacine arriving at the London Zoo during the early months of 1892.

(Research on this listing is ongoing and further information will be added as it becomes available.)
    Graham Renshaw (1938) made some interesting observations on London Zoo's last thylacine in an article entitled "The Thylacine" published in the Journal of the Society for the Preservation of the Fauna of the Empire.  Renshaw states:

    "A Thylacine studied by the writer was active during the early part of the day, running to and fro in its exercise yard, the head held low like a hound's on scent.  The beast often paused abruptly, as if to reconnoitre, standing motionless with head raised; it took little notice of the attendant entering the yard, as if half blinded by the sun.  When the light became powerful it often retreated to the inner den, when it curled itself up like a dog; but it would also recline to bask in the sun, a strange habit for a semi-nocturnal animal.  In sleep it lay on one side fully extended; the upper most ear remaining erect confirmed the original description by Harris.  It never uttered any sound, though the keeper said it would hiss or grunt if disturbed".

London Zoo's last thylacine - 1926
A photo of the London Zoo's last thylacine (a female), taken by F. W. Bond shortly after her arrival at the zoo in 1926.  She was resident from 26th January 1926 until her death on the 9th August 1931.  She was the last living thylacine to be seen outside of Australia.  Photo courtesy of the Zoological Society of London.

    The Launceston Examiner of the 22nd September 1884 (p. 2) makes mention of the two thylacines sent to London by Dr. A. B. Crowther of Launceston in 1884:

    "ZOOLOGICAL. - Last week, Dr. A. B. Crowther, York-street, received two very fine specimens (alive) of the Tasmanian native tiger.  These, which will be forwarded to the Royal Zoological Society, London, will be on view on Saturday next from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the doctor's residence".

    Although London Zoo never bred any of its thylacines, it certainly had aspirations to do so.  The Examiner of the 7th January 1885 (p. 2) published an abstract from a letter to Dr. Crowther from Professor Flower, of the Natural History branch of the British Museum in London, in which is stated:

    "I am happy to tell you that the thylacines have arrived quite safely and are comfortably lodged in the Zoological Gardens, with every prospect of doing well.  They are a very handsome pair, and very tame.  If we could only be fortunate enough to get them to breed it would be a grand thing, but anyhow it is most interesting to be able to observe them in a living state, as it is many years since the last ones died".

November 28th 1884
    The Examiner of the 3rd March 1885 (p. 2) states:

    "TASMANIAN WOLVES IN ENGLAND. - The Field, of January 3, publishes an engraving of the pair of Tasmanian wolves (Thylacinus Cynocephalus) which were obtained for the London Zoological Gardens from Dr. A. B. Crowther of Launceston.  From a description accompanying the engraving we learn that those wolves are located in a very large den under the terrace.  They are bedded with an abundance of straw, under which they are generally concealed in the day time.  When aroused by the offer of food they become very active, the female, which is considerably smaller than the male, securing her full share.  After feeding they will play very much in the same manner as two dogs, opening their enormous mouths and pretending to bite each other.  They are so far domesticated as to permit the keeper to go into the cage, and will even rub against him.  The two animals are in excellent health".

London Zoo - 1904
A thylacine photographed by W. P. Dando at the London Zoo in 1904.  Another photo of this individual is shown here. Photo courtesy of the Zoological Society of London.

    It has always been assumed that all the live thylacines exported to the United Kingdom were placed on display at the London Zoo.  This is not the case.  Historical records at the Zoological Society provide proof that a thylacine was displayed outside London.  A pair of thylacines were deposited at the London Zoo on the 30th June 1888, for and on behalf of a Mr. William Cross.  The female died after 8 days, but the male was returned to Cross on the 31st August 1888, after 8 weeks quarantine at the zoo.  William Cross was a major importer of animals for zoological gardens and other collections and was based on Earle Street, Liverpool.  What became of William Cross's thylacine is unknown, but it is highly probable that it was initially taken to Liverpool and placed on display in his menagerie awaiting a buyer.

    In addition to Cross's thylacine, researchers (Sleightholme & Campbell) at the Thylacine Museum confirmed that Bostock's Scottish Zoo in Glasgow also had a thylacine on display.  This is discussed later in this subsection, under the Thylacines in Circuses heading.

    Of historic interest, the Mercury newspaper of the 9th July 1910 (p. 10) reported on President Roosevelt's visit to the London Zoo to see the Tasmanian wolf: 

    "What time Mr. Roosevelt has been able to spare from the amenities of social life has been devoted to natural history.  The ex-President has made more than one visit to the Museum at South Kensington, and he has also visited the Zoological Gardens.  One of the things which interested him most was the male Tasmanian wolf, which has just been added to the collection at Regent's Park.  There has been a female in the gardens for some time, and Mr. Chalmers Mitchell, the secretary, is not unhopeful that the stock may be increased.  As he explained to Mr. Roosevelt, this is desirable".

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