DIG-A-DINO 2014 DINOSAUR DISCOVERY WEEK
Telephone: +61 7 4657 0414
The Australian Age of Dinosaur Museum’s “Dig-A-Dino” weeks are an experience with a difference and something to really tell your friends about. They offer a fascinating and scientifically important look into Australia’s ancient past and once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be a part of history as it unfolds.
Taking place in the vast, rolling Mitchell grass downs country of the Winton district, these digs have produced a bounty of dinosaur bones that are, so far, all are new to science. Many of the fossils are from gigantic sauropods that were common in the Winton district 95 million years ago. Can you imagine an animal 20 meters long and 4 meters high, weighing as much as five fully-grown African elephants? Don’t imagine it, come with us and discover it!
The “poster boy” of the collection, however, is Australoventor wintonensis or “Banjo”, the largest predatory animal discovered in Australia so far. Banjo was discovered in the same dig site as Diamantinasaurus matildae or “Matilda”, a gigantic sauropod.
Over the past eight years many people from all walks of life have come together on these digs to share an unforgettable experience. From all corners of Australia and beyond, dedicated folk have said goodbye to their comfort zones and headed for the bush to take part in a dinosaur excavation… and loved it! You can do that too!
What to expect
The twin share rooms are clean and comfortable. Accommodation facilities include flushing toilets, showers and a washing machine. This is a comfortable outback experience.
A day as a dinosaur dig team member can be as full-on or as casual as you like. The Australian Age of Dinosaurs team will explain everything you need to know, including how to differentiate bones from rocks, and be available to answer questions and provide guidance. Just pick you spot, on your own or with fellow diggers, and start looking for fossils. Be the first to see dinosaurs emerge again after 95 million years! Fossil material found to date includes massive sauropod bones, teeth, smaller bones from crocodiles and perhaps flying reptiles, plant fossils and more. You can also have a go at plastering the specimen you have dug out and get it ready for the trip to the Museum’s Laboratory.
At the end of a perfect day, relax with your fellow diggers and “duggers” (those who have been on a dig before) and talk about the day’s finds. After a delicious dinner and a presentation by one of the experts present, retire to a comfortable bed and dream of the big discoveries you and your team might make tomorrow.
Midway through the week, enjoy an excursion to the Museum’s Laboratory and see first-hand what will happen to your finds in the future. You can help prepare specimens by cleaning the rock off to make them ready for scientific study and display. A guided tour of the Museum site, The Jump-Up, follows with a picnic lunch, spectacular views and nature walks. Then it’s back to the dig site to soak up another glorious sunset, have a hot shower and join everyone once again for happy hour. Need we mention the atmosphere and beauty of the vast western Queensland starlit sky? Another treat.
Media representatives may be present at times. If you have any concerns about this please advise the Dig Supervisor.
Participants are able to take photos, however these must only be for personal use only. Your photographs cannot used for commercial purposes without the consent of Museum management.
No previous experience in palaeontology is required but participants must be over 18 years of age.
Working on a dinosaur dig involves patience, a good eye, a steady hand, and the ability to share close quarters with people of diverse ages and backgrounds.
The weather is generally dry and windy. The days can be warm to hot with cold nights so bring some warm clothing.
Private cars can be taken as far as the accommodation site, about 60 kilometers from Winton in outback Queensland. The Museum will arrange transport to and from the nearby dig site.
What we supply
What to bring
A health and safety briefing is held before work commences at the dig site. If you have concerns or reservations about the safety of tasks you are asked to carry out, or anything you observe on site, please bring this to the immediate attention of the Dig Supervisor. Our intention is to ensure you have a safe working environment.
You must notify the Dig Supervisor or a member of AAOD Management immediately of any health and safety-related incident or near miss while you are a participant on “Dig-A-Dino”. An incident report must be completed as soon as possible after the incident has occurred.