Huge dinosaur bones found in Queensland
A GRAVEYARD OF FOSSILS discovered in outback Queensland could shed light on Australia’s dinosaurs.
Palaeontologists at the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum in Winton, Queensland, uncovered the fossils near the site of the museum, in the central west of the state. The site is a hotspot for Australian dinosaur remains.
David Elliott, field palaeontologist and founder of the museum, says he has not seen this many large dinosaur bones in one area for over a decade.
“There were bones everywhere – giant limbs, vertebrae and 2m-long ribs stacked across each other and joined together by rocky concretions,” David says, adding that three ute-loads of bones were collected.
Discovering Australia’s dinosaurs
Dr Stephen Poropat, research associate at the museum, says the bones appear to belong to a very large sauropod dinosaur, possibly a skeleton of Wintonotitan. “These bones belong to a huge animal that is up there with some of Australia’s largest dinosaurs.”
“We suspect that it could be Wintonotitan but as very few complete bones of Wintonotitan have been found, we will need to wait until the bones have been prepared before we are sure.”
David says researchers were tipped off by a number of weathered bone fragments discovered near the dig site. “Like all sites in the Winton area, the first we know of them is when bone fragments are found on the surface.”
“From there, we dig below to find where the deposit has come from – usually about 1 to 2m underground.”
The bones are being transported to the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum where they will be stored until analysis is carried out early next year.