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Dinosaur footprint damaged by vandals

Tuesday 19 December, 2017


Parks Victoria was disappointed to discover a dinosaur footprint at the renowned Dinosaur Dreaming site within the Bunurong Marine Park had been damaged by vandals last week.

The Flat Rocks locality near Inverloch is exceptional in being one of only a handful of polar dinosaur sites in the world, which includes the dinosaur footprint.  Upon the original discovery in 2006, Palaeontologists from Museum Victoria and Monash University made a silicon rubber mould of the footprint. Rather than remove and store it at the Melbourne Museum, they decided it should be left in the rock, so visitors to the site could have the thrill of seeing it in its natural state.

The significance of the footprint is that it represents a moment frozen in time when a meat-eating dinosaur stood on that spot and left an impression of its foot. This differs from the recovery of the bones of dead animals from the nearby fossil layer that have been carried along in the water column of a fast- flowing river and deposited at that point.

So, it is quite disheartening for a site of such significance that attracts hundreds of people every year to the area has been damaged in such a careless manner.

Parks Victoria will be investigating the matter further, and if you have any information please call 13 1963.

Quotes attributable to Parks Victoria Ranger Team Leader Brian Martin:

“It is sad to think a person or persons who knew the location of the footprint would deliberately damage an important local icon that is recognised as being off international scientific significance.

Quotes attributable to Bunurong Environment Centre Education Officer, Mike Cleeland

“The thrill of seeing a real dinosaur footprint has been diminished with the callous act of vandalism.”

“Fortunately, I was able to retrieve some of the broken pieces of the footprint and hopefully the technicians at Museum Victoria may be able to restore the footprint to some degree.”

Quotes attributable to Dinosaur Dreaming’s, Lesley Kool:

“It leaves a sour taste in the mouth that anyone would deliberately destroy something that has brought pleasure to so many people over the years”


Media enquiries
Melanie McVey-Di Lazzaro
0459 818 451

Parks Victoria media centre