A staff member with items from the collection in the Discovery Centre

Discover over 120 ‘question of the month’ articles selected for their special interest. 

Do you have a question? Then please fill out the form below.

What questions can we answer?

You can ask our helpful and knowledgeable staff questions about the museum as well as questions about Queensland’s animals, rocks, fossils, people and history.

Help us answer your questions by referring to our Ask an Expert guidelines. 

Please do not bring or send mammals, birds, reptiles, frogs, or fish specimens to the museum unless prior arrangements have been made. For Health & Safety and legal reasons vertebrates will not be accepted by our team unless prior approval has been granted. Please contact the team using the form below.

Ask an expert guidelines

Please take responsibility for your own safety. Don’t put yourself at risk of being bitten or stung and assume all unknown animals have the potential to harm you.

If your enquiry relates to a suspected pest, biosecurity hazard or biosecurity breach, please contact the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.

Specimens collected from human skin or containing human tissue should be sent to a medical pathology service provider. Queensland Museum does not have medical diagnostic equipment nor does it offer a diagnostic service for potential human or veterinary pests or pathogens.

Ideally photos should include an object that gives an indication of scale. A ruler or coin is usually ideal, hands and smart phones vary in size, so are less helpful.

If possible, provide clear images or bring specimens to us in person. However, if you need to send it in and your animal is alive you will need to kill it by leaving it in a freezer for at least a day. Unless it is a hard-bodied insect that has already dried, you will need to prevent it rotting. Immerse it in methylated spirits for at least 2 days, then remove, and wrap in cotton wool. Place into a sturdy container with a tight-fitting lid (e.g. a small screw top plastic bottle).

It is vital that any queries about rocks or fossils include details of the location where the specimen was found. This information provides geological context for the specimen, and can commonly give clues to its age. Please note that we do not generally return geological specimens by post unless by prior arrangement.

Most native vertebrates are protected by Queensland legislation. Please contact us if you wish to send in a vertebrate. We would need to know in advance if you are sending something. We are almost never able to make house calls to pick up specimens. If you believe you have something very rare or unusual, however, we may be able to make special arrangements. Please contact us to discuss.

Always contact us first before sending cultural items. Never send unsolicited donations of any cultural items. Please leave Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural sites and objects as they are. The disturbance or relocation of cultural material can greatly diminish its cultural and scientific significance and it is also illegal. Queensland Museum does not enforce this legislation, but we strongly encourage you to leave such artefacts in their original location. For more information on the legislation protecting these sites and objects please refer to the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural heritage website.

In general, if you bring the actual specimen/item to us in person we won’t be able to immediately identify it. We will give you a receipt and then you can pick up your specimen/item on a return visit, after it has been identified. Please contact us before you bring in a dead vertebrate to discuss whether we can receive it and how to transport it.

Contact information

Question details

Please select an option from the relevant category below.

Your question

Please enter your question below and provide precise locality/contextual information about where your specimen was found/seen if possible or state if location is unknown or not applicable.

Attachments

Valid file types are image, video, audio, pdf and word (gif, jpg, jpeg, png, heic, pdf, mp4, avi, mov, hevc, mp3, wav, docx).

Privacy notice

Queensland Museum will only use the personal information you submit in this form to answer your questions, to provide you with the information you have requested or to make requests regarding your question. Further information about the types of information collected and stored by Queensland Museum can be found on our website: http://www.museum.qld.gov.au/privacy-and-security-statement.

Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required.


You might be interested in