A Tasmanian Devil at Sydney's Taronga Zoo

Photo: Stephanie Snipes

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Tasmanian Devil
Don't be fooled by this animal's sinister name or information you've gleaned from watching Saturday morning cartoons. This feisty marsupial poses little to no threat to humans. Considered the "vacuum cleaner" of the animal world, Tasmanian devils usually feed on carcasses found along the side of the road in their native Tasmania.

Sadly, Taronga zookeeper Tony Brit Lewis says these animals, which got their devilish name because their thin ears glow red in the sunlight, are decreasing in number because a facial tumor disease is wiping out populations in the wild. Taronga is part of a breeding program working to save this species and determine the cause of this rare, contagious cancer.
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