Question: What has been your best experience as a scientist?

  1. My best experience has been helping the Queensland Museum dissect a 15 metre long humpback whale that washed up on the beach. The Museum didn’t have a adult humpback skeleton so we had to cut all the bones out… it was very STINKY!


  2. Wow Shona! I would love to be involved in a whale dissection. When I worked at the Melbourne Museum, I marvelled at the video of the staff dissecting the blue whale, whose bones are currently on display there. It definitely looked like it was stinky!

    I’ve had many great experiences, but I loved working with the bugs in Live Exhibits at the Melbourne Museum. They have a quarantine facility there where they look after Tarantulas. These live Tarantulas were illegally imported by spider smugglers and destined for private collections. However, they were intercepted in the post or during raids by Australian Customs Service officers and officers of the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS).

    I got to feed them (check out this video of one feeding on crickets – and even hold some of them (the smaller, less scary ones!).


  3. Probably spending two weeks on an expedition to try to discover why the cruise ship the Lusitania exploded with such force when she was torpedoed in the First World War. We drove robots, remote controlled submarines and manned submersibles all over (and inside) the wreck.