Game Day: Moving a 6-ton fossil

September 25, 2008

Last week a colleague commented in her post on this blog that she’s ridiculously excited about the debut of Leonardo. The entire Houston Museum of Natural Science team echoes her sentiments.

It’s been a challenging couple of weeks since Ike’s wrath came upon our city. The museum was closed to the public for about five days due to the storm’s aftermath.  We were left without power; therefore, the opening date of Dinosaur Mummy CSI: Cretaceous Science Investigation was delayed until Sept. 26 (originally scheduled to open Sept.19).

Now we’re up and running and it’s only 23 hrs. and about 10 minutes until visitors are able to see Leonardo on display. It took a lot to get him here—a special palette; a very heavy fork lift; an air cushioned tractor trailer; a crane; along with our very own dynamic paleontology staff and outstanding support from supreme moving specialists. As Dr. Bakker says, “Moving a fossil is like moving a piece of art.”

In this video, we thought we would give you a rare peek of what David Temple calls “Game Day,”— moving Leonardo, a 77 million-year-old adult duckbilled dinosaur, from our off-site facility to the museum.

Check out the other videos in this series:
The mummified dinosaur Leonardo: too good to be true?
Mapping a dinosaur with Dr. Robert Bakker.
First in a paleontologist’s toolkit: glue.
Or, check out our channel on YouTube for even more video.
Authored By Melodie Wade

Melodie is a Public Relations Consultant at HMNS.

4 responses to “Game Day: Moving a 6-ton fossil”

  1. Astrid Leriche says:

    Wish I could have been there when they moved the mummy and wish I could visit the exhibition…
    Maybe next year. =)

    How’s Peanut going? Already finished/nearly finished?
    And is he going to be in the exhibition too?

    Give my regards to my uncle Dirk, curator of anthropology.



  2. Erin says:

    Hi Astrid,

    I sent links to your comments to Dirk – I am sure he’ll be enjoy seeing that you are reading.

    Peanut has been prepared and placed on display in the Dinosaur Mummy CSI exhibit, opening tomorrow (9/26). It’s amazing to see the difference between the fossil in the ground, then in the plaster jacket, and finally on display. It’s quite a transformation.

    Thanks for you comment! I hope you enjoy reading the blog.

  3. laanba says:

    That was great! Such an amazing thing to think about all the details that have to go into moving such a delicate yet heavy piece.

  4. Michael says:

    They made it seem like moving a 6 ton fossil was pretty easy but delicate work. I say what they did in moving the fossil wasn’t that easy at all. I believe they did a fine job of transferring the fossil from one place to another. It’s been about 9 years since they found it, so it’s about time it was moved.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Become An HMNS Member

With a membership level for everyone; Don't just read about it, see it.

View All Membership Levels

Editor's Picks The Real Moon Hoax That You Haven’t Heard Of Is Darwin relevant today? Oh The Hermannity! The Story of Houston’s Most Beautiful Green Space A Few Member Benefits Most HMNS Members Don’t Know About What The Loss Of The Museu Nacional in Rio de Janeiro’s Collections Means To The World What Is The Deal With Brontosaurus?!

Equally Interesting Posts

HMNS at Hermann Park

5555 Hermann Park Dr.
Houston,Texas 77030
(713) 639-4629

Get Directions Offering varies by location
HMNS at Sugar Land

13016 University Blvd.
Sugar Land, Texas 77479
(281) 313-2277

Get Directions Offering varies by location
George Observatory

21901 FM 762 Rd.
Needville, Texas 77461
(281) 242-3055

Get Directions Offering varies by location

Stay in the know. Join our mailing list.