Article | Updated 10 years ago


Image Peter Schouten

The coastal plains of what is now Queensland were important habitats for these armoured dinosaurs.

Minmi is the best known of all armoured dinosaurs (ankylosaurs) from Gondwana thanks to a nearly complete skeleton found in north-central Queensland that is 105 million years old. Minmi was moderately sized, similar to ankylosaurs of the Early Cretaceous found on other continents. But it has bony rods attached to the back bone, called paravertebrae, which were unique and help scientists to separate it from other ankylosaurs. Minmi had some protection against theropods through the plates of bone in its skin.

(105 million years ago)

NORTHERN AUSTRALIA 105 million years ago

Ankylosaurs may have been one of the more common types of dinosaur in Australia during the Cretaceous. Apart from Minmi, isolated ankylosaur teeth have been found in Victoria from the Early Cretaceous and in Queensland from the Late Cretaceous. Foot prints found in Western Australia, dated to the Early Cretaceous and previously thought to belong to the closely-related stegosaurs, may actually have been made by ankylosaurs.


Marine finds

Like Muttaburrasaurus, all specimens of Minmi have been found in marine rocks. Minmi lived during a time when much of eastern Australia was covered by a shallow sea and, occasionally, carcasses would drift out to sea after floods. One skeleton of Minmi was found together with teeth of small bramble sharks. The sharks may have fed on the dead dinosaur as it laid upside-down on the sea floor.

preserved armoured dinosaur from the Southern Hemisphere

Mum​mified Minmi
Some features of this Minmi skeleton below suggest that the dead dinosaur dried out completely and became mummified before it was washed out to sea. This specimen is also the best preserved armoured dinosaur from the Southern Hemisphere.IMAGE: QUEENSLAND MUSEUM



Minmi about half the height of a fully grown woman

Minmi para​vertebra


Diet Plants
Height 0.7m
Length 2.5m
Width 0.6m