The Tasmanian devil, the world's largest surviving carnivorous marsupial, cannot be mistaken for any other animal. Its spine-chilling screeches, dark colour and reputed bad temper led early European settlers to call it The Devil.
Although only the size of a small dog, it can look and sound incredibly fierce. Powerful jaws (nine times as strong as a dog's and comparable to a shark or crocodile) and teeth enable it to completely devour its prey - bones, fur and all. The only thing devils won't eat are echidna quills.
It is mainly a scavenger and feeds on what is available, mostly carrion (particularly roadkill, which can easily lead to devils becoming roadkill themselves) although it will occasionally hunt young or wounded animals.
Devils are famous for their rowdy communal feeding at carcasses - the noise and displays are used to establish dominance. They can eat nearly 40 per cent of their body weight in 30 minutes.
Devils once lived in mainland Australia but today are found only in Tasmania. They are particularly common in some north, east and central districts. Devils can be seen at the Narawntapu National Park, Mount William National Park, Cradle Mountain - Lake St Clair National Park, the Arthur River and highland lakes area.