Thursday 7 November 2019
6 – 8.00pm

What does it take to be a successful sea monster? How does studying current creatures help us interpret the fossils of past predators?

Don’t miss out on this rare chance to hear about the latest research and discoveries from two of Australia's most renowned palaeontologists.

Millions of years ago, the Earth’s oceans were home to some of the largest, fiercest and most successful predators ever! While dinosaurs ruled the land, huge prehistoric reptiles hunted the depths of the oceans.

Dr Espen Knutsen, Senior Curator Palaeontology at the Queensland Museum Network has travelled the world searching for evidence of these prehistoric predators. Espen will introduce us to these incredible creatures, share some of his adventures and reveal insights from the exciting discoveries he’s made. 

Espen has described six new species of Jurassic marine reptiles and hunted monsters in Australia, the Arctic, The Netherlands and USA. 

Joining Espen will be Dr Matthew McCurry, Curator of Palaeontology at The Australian Museum, Sydney. Matt will reveal how his innovative research using CT scanning and biomechanical modelling is throwing new light on these ancient predators and allows comparison to today’s ocean hunters. 

This discussion will be hosted by Maritime Museum Assistant Director Michael Harvey.

Note: Ticket includes light refreshments and the opportunity view the Sea Monsters – Prehistoric Ocean Predators exhibition after hours (5-6pm).

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Speakers

Dr Espen KnutsenDr Espen Knutsen is the Senior Curator of Palaeontology at the Museum of Tropical Queensland, Townsville.

He has described five new species of Jurassic marine reptiles and hunted monsters in Australia, the Arctic, The Netherlands and USA.

 

Dr Matthew McCurry, Curator of Palaeontology at The Australian Museum, SydneyDr Matthew McCurry is the Curator of Palaeontology at The Australian Museum and a Lecturer at The University of New South Wales. His work focuses on understanding the behaviour and ecology of extinct species including fossil whales and marine reptiles. Matthew combines traditional approaches such as excavation of fossil sites and description of species together with cutting edge analyses using CT scanning and biomechanical modelling. Through this work he is creating a clearer picture of what these mysterious creatures were doing in our oceans.

 

Michael Harvey,  Assistant Director, Public Engagement, Research and CollectionsMichael Harvey , Assistant Director, Public Engagement, Research and Collections. Michael has worked in the fields of museums and science communication for 20 years. Prior to taking up his current role at the Maritime Museum, Michael worked as Head of Exhibitions at the Australian Museum and at the Natural History Museum in London.

Michael has also travelled around Australia as a member and a coordinator of the Shell Questacon Science Circus, and has taught at the universities of Leicester and Sydney.