Arts Review

The Dinosaurs of Patagonia

Come face to face with the largest animal ever known at The Dinosaurs of Patagonia at the Queensland Museum

17th March - 2nd October 2023


Meet the largest animal to ever walk on our planet!


Dr Gemma Regan


The new exclusive exhibition at the Queensland Museum presents the most important palaeontological dinosaur collection from the Southern Hemisphere, including the largest animal found to ever walk on the Earth, the immense Patagotitan. 


Dinosaurs of Patagonia is an exhibition designed by Museo Paleontológico Egidio Feruglio (MEF) from Argentina featuring full-scale casts of Patagonian dinosaurs from the Cretaceous, Jurassic and Triassic periods. There are also real fossils and some new finds of antipodean creatures preserved from 230 million years ago! 


Entering the exhibition you are met by a video highlighting how the area of Patagonia formed from the supercontinent Pangea describing how it fractured to form South America and Australia. The dinosaurs are from the southern tip of South America where there were perfect conditions for preserving the fossils to provide the best record of dinosaurs in the Southern Hemisphere. All are unique to the area displaying a massive diversity in shape, locomotion and diet.


When you round the corner into the vast display room you come face to grinning face with the largest land animal ever discovered, the Patagotitan, estimated to weigh the same 12 African elephants! Titan means large in Greek which is an underestimation of its collosal size, as it has to stoop over the collection to fit with its goofy grin and peg-like teeth.


Patagotitan mayorum is an incredible 38m long and was estimated to have weighed 70 tonnes and is only comparable in size to the Blue whale Balaenoptera musculus at 30m in length. The cast is constructed from fibreglass casts from an almost complete skeleton of more than 180 bones excavated from Patagonia, one of the best paleontological discoveries to date. It is an incredible experience to stand underneath the immense dinosaur skeleton, with adults only reaching up the knee. Despite being herbivorous, it is not something you would want to come face to face within the wilds of Patagonia 100 million years ago!


There are 13 dinosaur species in the exhibition and 16 replica skeletons cast from the original fossils ranging from the gigantic Patagotitan to Gasparinisaura, the size of a dog from the Cretaceous Period (85 million years ago) at only 0.4m long x 0.6m high. Manidens condorensis is the smallest dinosaur on display from the Jurassic Period, only 30cm tall and 75cm long, weighing around 3kgs the size of your pet cat. Each skeleton reveals a rich and diverse evolution of herbivorous and carnivorous dinosaurs on Earth from 230 million years ago. 


The most intimidating carnivore on display is Tyrannotitan chubutensis from 120 million years ago during the early Cretaceous Period. It towers above you at 12 metres high and probably weighed 6 tonnes. This is another dinosaur you only want to meet in skeletal form!


Don’t miss one of the biggest skulls in the world at 1.6m long! The Giganotosaurus carolinii is related to the Tyrannotitan as part of the Carcarodontisauridae, dinosaurs with jagged shark-like teeth used to rip apart their prey. You can stare into their terrifying mouth and imagine how their prey must have felt.


It is a brilliant and fascinating exhibition for both children and adults alike, with a great gift shop with reasonable prices to fulfil all your dinosaur needs!


The exhibition closes on the 2nd October, so make a point to book online for a time slot and get up close and personal with the largest creature to ever walk the Earth!


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