The more time I have spent researching Mr Emmerichs' 2005 photos of the thylacine, the more convinced I am that they are genuine. Having also talked at length with Mr Emmerichs in Germany, I am only further persuaded that his story is genuine.
Also being one who has continually been fascinated by the (Tasmanian and mainland) history (and extinction, and post-extinction sightings) of the thylacine, and being in such a good position to reach Tasmania myself - relatively inexpensively - I have made plans to search for the thylacine at a date near to the 2nd anniversary of Mr Emmerichs' sighting.
In order for the trip to procede, I would need two things: time and money (ha!).
My employer actively supports various community concerns and has in the past raised support for victims of the 2004 Asian tsunami, as well as supported various nationwide and local initiatives.
I set about stating my case that I felt there was good reason to believe Mr Emmerichs' photos were genuine. In addition, it is practically mandatory that convincing proof of the species' existence be established in order to convince government authorities to scratch the thylacine from the "extinct" list. This, of course, would allow new funds to be directed towards the species' conservation.
Graciously, my employer has allowed me the time to fly to Tasmania to conduct this search for the thylacine.
The second obstacle was funding. I compiled a list of all expenses including travel to Tasmania, travel within Tasmania, food, accommodation, communication, recording equipment, emergency equipment, bushwalking equipment and cold-climate clothing. Very many of the required items are already in my possession and can be contributed by myself. Some are in the possession of a friend of mine who lives in Tasmania, and he has allowed me to use whatever is necessary to conduct the trip. Only a few of the items require additional funding - essentially the flight to Tasmania, hire of a car, food, and some of the additional expedition items.
In order to source funding I made an application for sponsorship with a notable Australian magazine. The application was submitted in early December and I was advised that the next meeting to consider sponsorship applications would be conducted in mid January. Given the proximity, in time, to the trip itself, was I still interested in seeking sponsorship? I think the answer here is self explanatory.
Today I received notification from the magazine that my application had come up for consideration, and unfortunately, my application has not been successful at this time.
Without this funding, I cannot afford the trip.
To provide a brief overview of my qualification for the trip (as noted in my sponsorship application), I have previously been actively involved in the sport of rogaining, which is long-distance cross country navigation (typically run as 24 hour bushwalking events using only a map and compass for navigation) and am quite comfortable in remote areas. I hold a current first aid certificate, and as can be seen on this website, clearly undertake photography of the natural world as well as write articles.
Nevertheless, as it stands, this trip will have to wait.
Mr Emmerichs returned to Tasmania in 2006 on the anniversary of the sighting to try and capture further evidence that his sighting was genuine. I should note that in Paddle's book (The Last Tasmanian Tiger), he cites evidence that the thylacine was migratory, often appearing at the same location on the same date each year, to within a few days. I have researched the lunar activity at the exact time of Mr Emmerichs' sighting and have found that virtually identical lunar conditions will prevail within a few days of February 3rd this year (2007). In contrast, when Mr Emmerichs returned in 2006, similar lunar conditions were not found for about 2 weeks either side of the 3rd.
As of late 2006, my understanding is that Mr Emmerichs was hoping to return to Tasmania again himself at the time of the anniversary, but due to Christmas, New Year and my recent trip along the east coast, I have not made recent contact with Mr Emmerichs and thus cannot confirm either way his own plans.