In the baked red clay of outback Queensland, a team of palaeontologists have unearthed dinosaur bones that may belong to a new species.

The discovery was made in Eromanga in west Queensland – Australia’s furthest town from the sea.

The remains were uncovered around 5pm yesterday as the team hit the “bone bed” at a site an hour from the Eromanga Natural History Museum.

Robyn Mackenzie, Director and palaeontologist for the Eromanga Natural History Museum, holds up a dinosaur bone.
Robyn Mackenzie, Director and palaeontologist for the Eromanga Natural History Museum, holds up a dinosaur bone. (Dan Llewellyn/Eromanga Natural History Museum)

Robyn Mackenzie, Director and Palaeontologist for the Eromanga Natural History Museum, told 9News.com.au the bones likely belong to a new species, which she estimated to be around 95 million years old.

“There’s a good chance it will be a new dinosaur,” Mrs Mackenzie said.

“Most things found in Australia in terms of dinosaurs have a very good chance of being new to science because of the nature of how we’ve been separated from Gondwana and South America for so long.

“It’s very exciting…it’s most probably going to be the nation’s youngest dinosaur.”

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The bones will be sent away for laboratory work but Mrs Mackenzie said they can already tell a “a little bit” about the species.

“It’s from a large plant-eating dinosaur, one they call a sauropod,” she said.

The sauropod dinosaurs of the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods were herbivorous and the largest terrestrial animals to roam the earth.
The sauropod dinosaurs of the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods were herbivorous and the largest terrestrial animals to roam the earth. (Supplied)

So far the team have uncovered mostly vertebrae but with only a metre of earth dug out, there are high hopes of finding more remains.

It could take three to five years for the remains to be fully exhumed.

The site was first discovered by Mrs Mackenzie’s son and daughter-in-law in 2018 who saw bones sticking out of the earth while mustering cattle.

Dinosaur bone was seen sitting on top of the ground.
Dinosaur bone was seen sitting on top of the ground. (Eromanga Natural History Museum)

They flagged the site, and a week ago the team put shovels into the ground for an official dig.

Eromanga is proving to be a hotbed for remains as there is a large area of dinosaur-age soil exposed.

2019 May Dig Site.
Another Eromanga dig site pictured in May, 2019. (Eromanga Natural History Museum)

“Over the past 17 years many sites have been found. Slowly each year we go through each site,” Mrs Mackenzie said.

“Because the right age soils has been exposed we’ve actually found the dinosaur bones on top of the soil. That’s the key to finding more bones beneath the ground.

“These are some of the richest dinosaur fields in Australia”.



This content first appear on 9news

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