From the little Leaellynasaura to the staggering Spinosaurus, the Queensland Museum’s latest exhibition delivers dinosaurs of all shapes and sizes.
Dinosaur Discovery features 20 life-sized animated models representing the Cretaceous period, some 145 to 66 million years ago.
And yes, there is a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Two of them, in fact.
Palaeontologist Scott Hucknall said he remembered being inspired by an animated dinosaur display that visited Brisbane back in 1993.
“Boy, have animatronic dinosaurs come a long way since then,” he said.
“These are fantastic dinosaurs. They move, they’ve got senses so when you walk past them they interact with you … really immersing you in the world 100 million years ago.”
Queensland Museum CEO Suzanne Miller said the South Bank complex was only the second museum in the world to host the exhibit, which was developed by the Western Australian Museum.
“It’s all based on scientific research and working with palaeontologists, then artists and modelmakers put together representations of the dinosaurs,” she said.
“Then we actually used Chinese animatronic specialists and each dinosaur was made piece by piece.”
Ms Miller said the museum had been a hive of activity in recent weeks, with containers of dinosaurs being delivered at all hours and a baby brachiosaurus being erected outside the Museum.
“We brought them in mostly in sections, so a lot of time has been spent putting the dinosaurs back together again,” she said.
“But their animatronic frames are solid single pieces, so that was the biggest challenge.”
A free Dinosaur Discovery app allows visitors to take advantage of augmented virtual reality segments, which use smartphones or tablets to project animated dinosaurs alongside the 3D version.
Dr Hucknall said it was great to feature four Australian dinosaurs, including three which had only been discovered and named in the past 20 years.
“The first part of the hall display you see Leaellynasaura from Victoria, Australovenator from Queensland, Muttaburrasaurus from Queensland, Minmi from Queensland,” he said.
The up-to-date research the models are based on means most feature feathers, quills, spines or other coverings – a departure from the dinosaurs made famous by Jurassic Park.