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Posts Tagged ‘Australia’

Here they are:

Um.

Well, here’s the story from The Northern Territory News:

There may be lions galore roaming the Top End. West Australian Mary Ford sent the NT News a photograph showing what appear to be big-cat paw prints.

She said the picture was taken at the entrance to Kakadu National Park in 2008.

But world-renowned experts say the prints show an animal without retractable claws, which means they probably belong to a big dog – or maybe a cheetah?

Three drivers said they had to stop when a lion crossed the Stuart Highway at Pinelands, on the outskirts of Darwin, on Sunday.

The NT News reported yesterday on speculation that the animal had escaped from a private collection in Humpty Doo

An impeccably informed source said: “Surely the good people of the Doo would hear a lion roar and ask, ‘What the hell is that? And then call the police.”

Readers share his scepticism.

Mad Bull of Alice Springs wrote on ntnews.com.au: “Maybe the roar heard was from Green voters because at the next election they will be silenced.”

Humour-challenged Brian of Thailand posted: “You have excelled this time with your crap.”

But Emma, who is intelligent enough to understand that something is humorous without having to be told “this is funny”, wrote:”Hahahahha. Love it.”

And commenter Dick Handcocks, who describes himself as “brother of Leon of The Doo”, said: “I’ve noticed a lot of fat hippos walking down Mitchell Street, especially when the US navy is in town.

“Good old Darwin is full of a variety of animals and plankton. Some breed out of control – their existence is supported by the taxpayer and Centrelink.”

Well.  Whatever may have been seen in the Northern Territory,  I can say definitively that these are not “lion tracks.”

Your mystery animal is some version of Canis lupus, either Canis lupus dingo or Canis lupus familiaris.

It’s a dog or a dingo.

Which may or may not be after your baby.

Just for comparison here is a dog track:

See how it’s oval shaped and the toes are arranged to a point?  See the claw marks?

That’s how you know you’re looking at a dog’s tracks.

This is an actual lion track that is juxtaposed with a human hand:

(Source for image)

Even if we ignore the size, the toes range outward. There are no claw marks with the tracks, because lions can retract their claws.

 

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