News

CAVEPS 2015 logo Research showcased at CAVEPS 2015
20 September 2015
The 15th biennial Conference on Australasian Vertebrate Evolution, Palaeontology and Systematics (CAVEPS) was held in Alice Springs on 1-5 September 2015.

Field team Riversleigh expedition 2015
01 August 2015
The 2015 expedition to Riversleigh produced some great results.

Bilby Palaeontologists unearth rare 15-million-year-old bilby
21 March 2014
An ancient fossil of the bilby, Australia's answer to the Easter rabbit, has been discovered at the Riversleigh World Heritage site in north west Queensland.

Giant platypus Giant toothed platypus
05 November 2013
An extinct species of huge, carnivorous platypus about a metre long the largest platypus ever found has been discovered in the famous Riversleigh World Heritage Area of Queensland.

Riversleigh landscape (credit: Rick Arena) "New Riversleigh" fossil site
05 August 2013
A major new fossil site - dubbed New Riversleigh - has been discovered by UNSW scientists beyond the boundaries of the famous Riversleigh World Heritage area in north-western Queensland.

Dr Robin Beck Discovery: Marsupial links to South America and Africa
23 July 2013
Two tiny fossils - an ankle bone and a tooth - are prompting an overhaul of theories about marsupial evolution after they revealed unexpected links to South America - and possibly Africa.

Excavation at Murgon Field trip to Murgon
04 September 2012
A major trip was undertaken recently to collect more fossiliferous sediments from Eocene clays near the town of Murgon in Queensland.

Insect preserved in amber More amber pieces acquired for the Queensland Museum
04 September 2012
Thanks to the generosity of the discoverers, Elizebeth Norris and Dale Wicks, with support from the CREATE fund, the Queensland Museum has added to its collection of amber pieces with a variety of inclusions.

Excavation New discoveries on Riversleigh 2012 expedition
26 July 2012
Another highly successful field trip was held from 28 June to 6 July 2012.

Fossicking Floraville 2012 field trip success
26 July 2012
Following the excavation of the almost complete Diprotodon skeleton at Floraville in 2010 and 2011, the emphasis for the 2012 trip was the collection of more material and resolving a geological section at the Old Floraville Crossing.

Wholly Dooley Site Exciting new finds at Riversleigh
14 May 2012
A recent trip to remote parts of Boodjamulla (Lawn Hill) National Park (which includes the Riversleigh World Heritage area) was highly successful.

Dr Karen Black Dr Karen Black honoured
14 May 2012
A key member of the Riversleigh research team, Dr Karen Black, has received the 2012 Dorothy Hill Award for research in the Earth Sciences by the Australian Academy of Science.

Fossil bones 2011 field trip to Riversleigh
05 September 2011
A wide range of individual projects were part of the 2011 annual field trip to Riversleigh.

Excavation Expedition to Floraville 2011
05 September 2011
A highly successful field trip to Floraville was held with the main aim being the excavation of the Diprotodon skeleton first discovered on the 2010 field trip.

Pink-tongued skink Weird Australian hammer-tooth marsupial fossil found
20 April 2011
Fossils of bizarre lizard-like, snail-eating marsupials have been discovered by UNSW palaeontologists in an ancient fossil field in the Riversleigh World Heritage area in Queensland. The fossils date back 10 to 17 million years ago.

Synchrotron image of ant in amber Cape York amber update
29 November 2010
Work is continuing on the Amber project both internationally and in Australia.

Marsupial mole copyright: Mike Gillam/Auscape Do holes make moles?
03 November 2010
The mysterious origins of Australia's bizarre and secretive marsupial moles have been cast in a whole new and unexpected light with the first discovery in the fossil record of one of their ancestors.

Fossil bandicoot Gentle bilby had "killer" ancestor
01 September 2010
The gentle rabbit-like bilby – Australia's stand-in for the Easter bunny - had an ancient relative that was a far more fearsome little beast, a new study has found.

Fossil skull World-wide interest in Riversleigh fossils
04 August 2010
Following the publication of a paper in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, there has been media interest from around the globe in the ground-breaking study by Dr Karen Black and the team from the Palaeosciences Group at UNSW.

Excavation Riversleigh field trip 2010
04 August 2010
A team headed by staff from the Palaeosciences Group at UNSW together with scientists from other institutions has returned from another highly successful field trip to the World Heritage listed Riversleigh fossil province north of Mt Isa.

Opal mine Lightning Ridge trip 2010
04 August 2010
Recently, a trip was made to visit Lightning Ridge with a number of objectives.  Foremost amongst these was to collect some fossil-rich material from a particularly-intriguing mine and this was highly successful with a range of interesting fossils recovered.

Excavation Leichhardt River Diprotodon
04 August 2010
The highlight of the 2010 trip to Leichardt River was a skeleton of a Diprotodon discovered in a dry gully..

Amber Australian amber more significant finds to come?
04 August 2010
Following the segment on the ABC Science program Catalyst, the UNSW team has been in touch with a number of people from around Australia who have reported finding amber pieces on local beaches.

Fossil skull Remarkable fossil cave shows how ancient marsupials grew
14 July 2010
The discovery of a remarkable 15-million-year-old Australian fossil limestone cave packed with even older animal bones has revealed almost the entire life cycle of a large prehistoric marsupial, from suckling young in the pouch still cutting their milk teeth to elderly adults.

Beetle found in amber Australian amber is treasure trove of ancient life
17 June 2010
A study led by UNSW scientists has confirmed the discovery of Australia's most northerly fossil site  - deposits of the precious mineral amber that contain a treasure trove of trapped animal and plant remains and even bubbles of air from millions of years ago.

UNSW crest From Queensland to Peru: tiny marsupial spanned three continents
15 January 2010
A newly discovered prehistoric marsupial has turned out to be almost identical to one otherwise only known from Peru - the first evidence that the same group of tiny land mammals spanned half the globe across the ancient supercontinent of Gondwana.

Koala Loud and lazy but didn't chew gum: Ancient koalas
21 December 2009
Skull fragments of prehistoric koalas from the Riversleigh rainforests of millions of year ago suggest they shared the modern koala's "lazy" lifestyle and ability to produce loud "bellowing" calls to attract mates and provide warnings about predators.

UNSW crest Amber update: Cape York 2009
06 October 2009
A successful field trip to Cape York was held recently. A small number of amber specimens were collected but the main aim was to try and investigate possible sources of the amber.

Mystacina. Photo credit: Rod Morris. Bizarre walking bat has ancient heritage: research
30 July 2009
A bizarre New Zealand bat that is as much at home walking four-legged on the ground as winging through the air had an Australian ancestor 20 million years ago with the same rare ability, a new study has found.

Fieldwork Riversleigh 2009
18 July 2009
Following a highly successful CAVEPS conference held at the University of New South Wales (UNSW), some conference participants joined the team from UNSW for the annual trip to the Riversleigh World Heritage site north of Mt Isa.

Phil Creaser Creaser digs deep to CREATE
22 April 2009
Wily public servant, accidental vertebrate palaeontologist, and widely regarded as a "good bloke", Phil Creaser has acquired a new epithet: philanthropist.

UNSW crest 2008 news & achievements
17 November 2008
The University of New South Wales has recently been awarded an ARC Linkage grant of $900,000 over 3 years with collaborating partners.

Fossil kangaroo skull Riversleigh 2008
16 November 2008
After the rain-drenched 2007 trip, the weather conditions for the 2008 trip were the usual  fine and sunny days.

Monito del Monte Living fossil still calls Australia home: study
25 March 2008
They are separated by a vast ocean and by millions of years, but tiny prehistoric bones found on a Queensland farm have been directly linked to a strange and secretive little animal that lives today in the southern rainforests of South America.

Tiny bones Tiny bones rewrite textbooks
18 January 2007
Small but remarkable fossils found in New Zealand will prompt a major rewrite of prehistory textbooks, showing for the first time that the so-called "land of birds" was once home to mammals as well.

UNSW logo Scientific gold in amber discovery on beaches
27 December 2006
When fisherman Dale Wicks and his partner Beth Norris went on evening walks on the remote coast of far north Queensland, they became intrigued by large chunks of strange-looking rock on the beaches.

 

Latest news

CAVEPS 2015 logo Research showcased at CAVEPS 2015
20 September 2015
The 15th biennial Conference on Australasian Vertebrate Evolution, Palaeontology and Systematics (CAVEPS) was held in Alice Springs on 1-5 September 2015.

Field team Riversleigh expedition 2015
01 August 2015
The 2015 expedition to Riversleigh produced some great results.

Bilby Palaeontologists unearth rare 15-million-year-old bilby
21 March 2014
An ancient fossil of the bilby, Australia's answer to the Easter rabbit, has been discovered at the Riversleigh World Heritage site in north west Queensland.

More news >>

Amber

Main research program: Cape York amber

Fragments of precious amber found on the remote beaches of Cape York contain the remains of plants and tiny animals millions of years old.

Read more >>

Excavation at Riversleigh

Main research program: Riversleigh

The rocks at Riversleigh are rich in well-preserved fossil remains of the ancestors of the modern Australian fauna and entirely new kinds of animals previously unknown to science.

Read more >>

Steropodon

Main research program: Lightning Ridge

Deposits at Lightning Ridge in northern New South Wales yield some of the rarest, most beautiful and valuable fossils in the world.

Read more >>

Excavation

Help support Australian palaeontological research

The CREATE fund has been established to facilitate and conduct research into our past. Individuals can help through donations.

Read more >>