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An intriguing photograph from Indonesia may show a species of tiger that was declared extinct decades ago seemingly alive and well.
The Javan tiger had roamed the island of Java until its population dwindled to the point that it was considered extinct by scientists in 1994 after an exhaustive survey of the island found no evidence for the creature.
Much like the Tasmanian Tiger, however, witnesses occasionally claimed to have seen the ‘lost’ big cat over the years and now a new photo has some hoping that the creature’s declared demise was premature.
A park ranger taking an inventory of cattle at the Ujung Kulon National Park in Java was stunned to see a tiger that he did not recognize as one of the animals found at the site.
Fortunately, the quick-thinking witness managed to snap a photo of the monstrous feline as it prowled through a field.
Releasing the photo to the media this week, the head of the park told the press that the creature featured in the image could be either a Javan leopard or, thrillingly, the presumed-extinct Javan tiger.
An examination of the image by wildlife experts with the Indonesia government echoed this uncertain analysis, saying that the creature appeared to have the markings of a Javan tiger, but the physicality of a leopard.
Nonetheless, Indonesia’s Ministry of Environment and Forestry plan to set up a series of camera traps in the conservation area where the photograph was taken with the hopes of getting better images of the creature.