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Students from Richmond North Public School meet the mighty T-Rex

T Rex and children

The computerised system of compressors that drives Taronga’s Dinosaurs in the Wild exhibit has been turned on, bringing 21 individual dinosaurs to life at the Zoo.

The animatronic creatures are now rearing and twisting, adding there roars and calls to the Zoo’s usual noises, courtesy of special compressors that pump very dry air into the dinosaurs’ hydraulic mechanisms that are hidden under their life-like skins.

After a wild night in the zoo’s educational sleepover program ‘ZooSnooz’, students from Richmond North Public School were lucky enough to get the first look at the whole of this fascinating exhibition. 

Dinosaur Keeper, Gillian Markham, said: “It’s great to finally see the reactions of kids when they see these amazing prehistoric creatures moving and making sounds. Their faces say it all. I think it’s bringing out the inner child in the adults too!”

“To be able to showcase this collection of animals from the past with today’s animals which are facing a similar threat today is really exciting for us. There’s just so much to learn. This exhibit links the challenges of adaptation that sent the dinosaurs to extinction, with the similar threats now faced by animals like the Tasmanian Devil and the Sumatran Tiger.”

The only prehistoric Australian at Taronga Zoo, the Muttaburrasaurus, named for its discovery site in Queensland will surprise visitors as they enter the zoo. Settled under a giant fig tree, its screech will have heads turning in every direction before it’s seen.

“Taking some by surprise will be the striking Dilophosaurus with its prominent red crest, which actually spits water at those who are game enough to get close.” said Gillian.  

The impressive king of them all, four-metre high Tyrannosaurus Rex, can be found at the Dinosaur Lawns. Also at the lawns, the Dimetrodon shows the complexities of life-like animatronic dinosaurs, designed and built by Billings Productions, through an interactive panel allowing guests to control and see its mechanical movements.

Hurry before they go extinct, Dinosaurs in the Wild is only at Taronga Zoo until February 3, 2013. 

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