"AFTER talking to farmers, salt-of-the-earth-type characters, I believe the animal is still here."
Michael Williams is talking about the extinct thylacine.
The New South Wales blue-collar worker is on his eighth trip in 10 years to the state searching for evidence the Tasmanian tiger walks the Apple Isle - 29 years after it was officially declared dead and gone.
The last known thylacine died in captivity on November 7, 1936.
"Initially I wasn't that much interested in the tiger and we did a book called Australian Big Cats which is folklore on the big cat mythology on the mainland," Mr Williams said.
"While we were doing that, we started to get Tassie tiger reports and we started to follow that up.