Essential partnerships: BHP Billiton

Partnerships with government and private industry are essential to the ongoing success of the Queensland Museum Network.

Inspiring today. Protecting tomorrow

The Queensland Museum and BHP Billiton have joined forces through an exclusive partnership that is committed to the continued promotion and preservation of Queensland’s unique biodiversity.

BHP Billiton is serious about conserving Queensland’s unique biodiversity and ecosystems.

As the Queensland Museum Network’s Exclusive Biodiversity Partner, BHP Billiton supports important projects that include biodiversity-themed learning resources, an environmental science program for young people and the spectacular Wild State exhibition. Recognising that today’s students are tomorrow’s leaders, this partnership focuses on school children, to encourage fascination and academic excellence in the field of biological science. 

This innovative partnership highlights the diversity and fragile balance of Queensland’s unique flora and fauna through three exciting projects.

This corporate partnership represents an innovative example of the Arts working with industry to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes of community engagement in science and the environment.

The story of Queensland’s biodiversity began over a billion years ago and continues today. There have been countless changes over this time and many species have been lost forever. Looking forward, we can use our knowledge to identify animals that are endangered, and others that have been forced to adapt to survive due to loss of habitat and a changing climate, helping all Queenslanders make decisions to protect and preserve our natural habitats.

The generous support of BHP Billiton helps the Queensland Museum Network share the remarkable stories of the diversity and fragile balance of Queensland’s unique flora and fauna, to better understand our past and do even more to protect our future. 

Megafauna in Queensland

Finding Megafauna kits The Finding Megafauna kits, developed with support from BHP Billiton Mitsui Coal.

Megafauna are an extinct, super-sized species of mammals, reptiles and marsupials that lived after the age of the dinosaurs during the Pleistocene Epoch (1.6 million-10,000 years ago).

In 2008 BHP Billiton Mitsui Coal (BMC) and local traditional owners were conducting a routine cultural heritage survey of their mine site at South Walker Creek west of Nebo when they found a fossilised bone.  Queensland Museum Network palaeontologists were asked to identify the discovery.  They determined the bone was from the enormous crocodile Pallimnarchus, an extinct species of megafauna. 

Since then, BMC has worked alongside the Queensland Museum Network to systematically excavate the site year to year, to develop conclusive baseline data for tropical Australian megafauna. In 2011 a broader three-year partnership was established, formalising the commitment to complete annual field expeditions at South Walker Creek and:

  1. Providing professional support for collecting institutions in Mackay and Nebo through the Museum Resource Centre Network
  2. Developing a suite of megafauna themed learning resources available to Queensland schools via the Queensland Museum Loans Service
  3. Creating Lost Creatures a permanent exhibition revealing the secrets of our ancient past at the Queensland Museum.

This partnership demonstrates how business and cultural organisations can work effectively together, sharing expertise and resources to strengthen regional communities.  Our collaboration has enabled the discovery and preservation of amazing regional treasures, and given the Queensland Museum Network the opportunity to share these fascinating stories both locally and state-wide through palaeontological field work, expert museum consultation, hands-on learning resources and community events.