Rex & Heather Gilroy - Research of the Australian (Marsupial) Panther

Rex Gilroy hopes to inspire other future researchers to follow his example and dare to question long-established dogmas of our prehistory and, like him, reveal evidence for long-hidden mysteries about which the scientific establishment would prefer we knew nothing.
Excerpts from the 2006 Book Out Of The Dreamtime - The Search For Australasia's Unknown Animals. Part Three – Lions and tigers of the Australian Bush. Chapter Seven – What is the Queensland Tiger? Chapter Eight – Australia’s Mysterious Marsupial Lions – Meat-Eaters of the Miocene. Chapter Nine – The “Australian Panther” – Big Cats of the Bushland.

Rex & Heather Gilroy

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Rex and Heather Gilroy-Australia's Top 'Unexplained' Mysteries Research Team. Photos & Text copyright (c) Rex & Gilroy Heather 2010
• Research of Rex & Heather Gilroy - Panther Research Compilations of Descriptions - More Up June 2010

Eyewitness Descriptions

Copyright © Rex Gilroy 2003

We are often asked: “What drives you both on, searching year after year, for evidence of animals not officially recognised by scientists?” For us, the answer must always be a love of the rugged Australian bush; and, as field naturalists apart from the known species of our unique native animal life, nothing fascinates us as much as the unknown in nature.

Besides, the vast eastern Australian mountain ranges, like those in other remote parts of the world, contain thousands of square kilometres of scrub and forest country, so inaccessible that much of it has only been mapped rom the air. It is from these ranges that the majority of Australia’s ‘unknown’ animals sightings occur. Until these vast wilderness regions can be fully explored, who can say that creatures such as the Tasmanian Tiger; Australian Panther, Giant Monitor Lizard, The Yowie and others cannot survive hidden from the view of modern man?

It is for this reason that the science of Cryptozoology is important. By gathering evidence of previously unknown or long-thought ‘extinct’ species, the Cryptozoologist can do much towards having them officially recognised and added to the international protected species list.

Such legislation is essential. No sooner is the sighting of some rare animal like the “Australian Panther” [actually a giant marsupial cat] or Tasmanian Tiger reported in the mass media, than the scrub is soon full of trophy hunters armed with guns and dogs, intent upon shooting the poor creature – usually encouraged by a big cash reward offered by some tourist-promoting businessman.

Such antics must be stopped if mankind is to preserve the world’s dwindling wildlife. Coupled with any protective measures must also come further legislation to ensure the preservation of habitats, particularly the world’s rainforests, which are too often the target of the timber industry, that cares little for the wildlife dependent upon these vast forests for their survival. We must act now to save the natural world, for tomorrow will be too late.

It was with these ideals in mind that I established the “Australasian Unknown Animals Investigation Centre” [PO Box 202 Katoomba, NSW 2780; New Email:] in 1977. Here all manner of sightings reports and other evidence is gathered and scientifically assessed. The growing mass of information and other evidence gathered here is more than enough to convince us that there is still much to learn about the rare and unknown species that lurk within the deep and impenetrable recesses of our vast Australia bush.

Eyewitness Descriptions

Copyright © Rex Gilroy 2003

The Full Accounts are included in the Book

Large, black-furred cat-like animal. Large paw prints embedded in soil near their camp. Thrown aside, dark shape leapt upon him with a screech. Bounded across the creek into bushland. Shocked, badly scratched staggered back to camp.

A group of a dozen people. Black-furred panther-like animal. Two metres in length from head to tail. Standing up to 0.6 of a metre on all fours

“Black cat-like monster”, a good seven feet [2.3m] from head to tail, bounded out of scrub Attack and carry off a large calf.

Young Fossicker. Being watched by a large black ‘panther’ from among bushes. Animal emerged, then dashed across the shallow creek. It was apparently a female. “carrying a pouched cub,”.

Farmer and his wife. spotted a “seven-foot-length, giant, panther-like animal” [2.13m], dashed across their back paddock. Leapt effortlessly over a six foot [1.83m] fence before disappearing into trees.

Two motorcyclists. Confronted by a “seven foot length [2.13m] head-to-tail, black-furred, panther-like creature”, on a bush track.

Reports of fresh tracks of the “Moe Monster” found on properties about the district. A long ‘trackway’ of 15.3cm length paw prints were found on a muddy bush track close to the town.

A massive black monster. Caught in the glare of the headlights, walking across the highway some distance ahead of us. 20 feet away. The animal, it snarled directly at us, then dashed off the road into the darkness across open ground. The animal looked like a giant panther - big head, large body and long tail - and at least 7ft [2.13m] from head to tail, and about 3ft [92cm] in height on all fours. Its legs were powerful-looking and it had big paws.”

Walking across a paddock towards a stand of tall gums when, to my horror, a monstrous black ‘thing’ emerged from the tree-cover not 50ft [15.24m] ahead of me, and bounded in big long strides across the property. Bdy length of at least six feet [1.83m], with a two feet [61cm] long tail. Stood about two feet six inches [76cm] off the ground. Shiny black fur and big legs. Looked like a big jungle cat of the type found in Asia but for its big, dog-like head. I panicked and ran for the farmhouse as the animal jumped a roadside fence in a big leap and scrambled across the road into scrub.”

Dingo-shooting. Spotted in the distance a large black animal walking across a dry creek bed. Rraised his telescopic sight-fitted rifle. Could have shot the animal, but chose not to. “The animal was unique to me and was doing no harm. I would say it was up to 1.83m from head to tail, and stood up to 61cm high on all fours. It looked something like a cross between a big panther and a dog of some kind”, he said.

A dozen sightings reports, as well as several discoveries of tracks of these animals were reported to the author from widely-scattered areas of the Kimberley. Samples of their excrement recovered by landowners sent to university scientists in Perth received no response.

A boundary rider. Had seen these animals on three occasions in the Fitzroy area. “In the first incident, I noticed I was being watched from about 30 feet away by a black, cat-like animal standing among bushes. It appeared curious and was about the size of an Alsatian Dog. It then moved off. In the second incident I came upon a black cat or panther-like beast in the act of devouring a calf it had just killed. I It was about five to six feet from head to tail. My third encounter I found a number of large, sloppy tracks in the mud of a waterhole. I got off the horse and had a look at them. They were about five inches in width and length, even allowing for distortion in the mud, and I estimated they were only minutes old. The tracks led off up a dry creek bed and I followed them ‘til they disappeared into thick bushland’. It was soon after this I saw ahead of me, perched some 25 feet [7.62m] from the ground, a large, perhaps six foot long, panther-like animal, its red tongue hanging out as it panted, watching me from a tree limb. My horse took fright and I decided to leave the place. The animal made no effort to move and was still there on the limb when I rode away.”

Nineteen year old saw a horrifying sight while bushwalking. On a rise above a dry creek bed he watched from behind bushes as a “black-haired, cat-like monster”, over 2m from head to tail, dragged a dead calf in its powerful jaws up the creek bed and over rocks and then disappeared among large boulders.“I was too frightened after seeing this animal to go any further. If it saw me I thought it would attack and kill me,” he said later.

A group of tourists - men, women and children spotted three black-furred cat-like creatures emerging from riverfront scrub about 100 yards away, to drink at the waters edge. The two larger animals [a male and female], and a smaller cub the size of a house cat. Once they detected their scent they dashed off up the river bank and into the scrub. “I watched the creatures through my binoculars for about two minutes and I’m sure they were not feral cats. They were not panthers either, but something else - but what, I do not know”, said one member of the group, Bill Cameron, to a reporter later.

A stockman riding in bushland was thrown from his horse when he was surprised by a giant-sized, black-furred, cat-like monster. Claimed was the “size of a cow”. Only a few hasty shots from his revolver saved him from attack, and the animal fled into the scrub.

A unit of soldiers patrolling the jungle near Normanton on the Gulf of Carpentaria coast surprised a large black cat-like animal engaged in tearing up a full-sized bull it had just killed. The men grabbed for their rifles, the animal left its ‘kill’ and dashed across the foliage toward the men. A lucky shot brought it down. Left the body where it lay. Despite a search some weeks later, they failed to relocate it.

A ‘panther’ was reported terrorising the Atherton district of far north Queensland. It left huge paw prints in farmyard soil and on creek banks, killed poultry and calves, and made its presence known by emitting loud, ear-piercing cat-like screams and howls from the forest depths on the edge of lonely farms late at night.

A farmer and his family were sitting in their lounge room listening to the radio. In the moonlight he spotted a large dark shape moving past the window. He looked out and saw, to his surprise and shock, an enormous dog-cat like animal walking into the backyard. Grabbing his rifle, he alerted his wife. In the torchlight they saw an enormous, black-furred creature with glaring silver-white eyes looking toward them from barely 20ft [6.1m] away! They were terrified, but the farmer fired at the animal, hitting it twice. It dashed off screeching into the darkness.The next day a neighbour found the animal lying dead in the scrub near his home. The two men buried it, thinking to recover the skeleton later, but for one reason or another they never did.

An entire family got a good look at one of these animals. Two boys and their parents were standing among trees on the edge of a large paddock, when they spotted a large black animal moving through tall grass. They watched as the creature began loping across the paddock, then stopped and looked in their direction. It appeared to be 2m in length from head to tail. By this time, the father had dashed to the nearby family car to get his binoculars. “The animal had a cat-like, yet dog-like body appearance about it, with pricked ears. Its large head looked dog-like, but the sleek black fur that covered the animal’s body made it look similar to a panther. It had a long tail which did not appear to wag. We were about 360m from the animal. It then dashed off across the paddock, heading for a dry creek bed, and vanished quickly,” the father told me later.

A farmer went to see what was making his cattle uneasy in a back pasture. As he approached a group of cows, he saw a “monstrous black-furred dog-yet-cat like beast” emerge from behind a tall rock. He afterwards described it as “standing fully three and a half feet [1.7m] on all fours, and with a body six feet [1.83m] long, and a tail at least three-to-four foot [ie up to 1.22m] in length”. “It stood there snarling, 20 feet from me, its face displaying a wrinkled, leathery-looking appearance with yellowish eyes. I had no gun and ran for my life back to the house. By the time I returned armed, it was gone. I saw it in the distance, bounding up a rise into a stand of timber. It never returned”, he told me later.

• Reports - Sightings From the 1995 Book Mysterious Australia * Click Here *
• Original Newspaper Accounts * Click Here *
• The Best Sightings * Click Here *
• Theories - The Case For a Marsupial Cat * Click Here *
• Timeline of Sightings * Click Here *
• Expeditions Australia Wide * Click Here *
• Drawings * Click Here *
• Plaster Casts * Click Here *
• Compilation of Descriptions of Eyewitnesses * Click Here *
• Radio Interviews * Click Here *
• Television Interviews * Click Here *
• Newspaper Interviews * Click Here *
• Reports - Sightings From Out Of The Dreamtime - The Search For Australasia's Unknown Animals * Click Here *
• Message Board - Report a Sighting Australia Wide * Click Here *
State By State Sighting Reports
• Panther Research New South Wales * Click Here *
• Panther Research Victoria * Click Here *
• Panther Research Queensland * Click Here *
• Panther Research Northern Territory * Click Here *
• Panther Research Western Australia * Click Here *
• Panther Research South Australia * Click Here *
• Panther Research A.C.T (Canberra) * Click Here *
• Panther Research Tasmania * Click Here *
Reports on Panther Activity by Government Departments

• NSW Agriculture Report on information available on the reported large black cat in the Blue Mountains. Prepared by: Bill Atkinson, Agricultural Protection Officer * Click Here *

• Legislative Assembly - Thursday 22 May 2003 * Click Here *
• Australian Zoos * Click Here *
Internet Reports
• Message Boards * Click Here *
• Newspaper Reports * Click Here *
• Blog Reports * Click Here *
Photographs/Video/Video Stills/Drawings
• Large Cats * Click Here *
• Feral Cats * Click Here *
• Private Zoos * Click Here *
• You-Tube * Click Here *
When Animals Attack
• Attacks involving lions or tigers in Australia since 1980 * Click Here *
Contact Rex & Heather Gilroy
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Rex & Heather Gilroy - Research of the Australian (Marsupial) Panther -Sighting Reports

Kangaroo Valley: If, as I maintain, we are dealing with a still unknown species of giant marsupial cat related to Thylacoleo, then we can cancel out the 'panther' feral cat theory. Undoubtedly, feral cats make up a large percentage of Kangaroo Valley 'panther' reports, but a comparison of physical descriptions and plaster casts of 'panther' paw-prints certainly distinguishes this animal from any feral cat.
Rex & Heather Gilroy
Rex and Heather Gilroy-Australia's Top 'Unexplained' Mysteries Research Team.
Photos & Text From mysterious Australia copyright (c) Rex & Gilroy Heather 2010
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