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_MG_7262-tasmanian_devil_trapping20091123.jpg
Wild Tasmanian Devil after being trapped on the Forestier Peninsula, Tasmania, waiting in a sack to be checked for signs of Devil Facial Tumour Disease by a team of field scientists led by Drew Lee from the Save The Tassie Devil program. The disease is a contagious cancer that scientists are only beginning to understand, but has spread rapidly through the population, leaving the devil listed as endangered. In December 2009, it was announced that the disease may be related a peripheral nerve cell, called the Schwann cell, which has led some hopes for preserving the devil, at least in terms of quarantine insurance populations.  The scientists are trapping and monitoring the animals on the Tasman Peninsula as part of a programme to control the further spread of the disease and to create insurance populations.