They have been spotted in every Australian state, huge black catlike creatures that prowl the remote regions of vast mountain ranges and hidden valleys.
Sightings have multiplied of late, perhaps because of the pressures on animal habitats in these last long years of the drought. Scattered farming communities are terrorised, cows mysteriously mauled and livestock slaughtered. Left behind, as calling cards, are large paw-prints.
There are no native big cats in Australia, although once a highly specialised group of killer marsupials called Thylacoleo, marsupial lions, wandered around the continent. The size range of Thylacoleo varied from a house moggy up to a lion, but in any case they all vanished around the end of the Pleistocene.