Museums Victoria has opened the ballot box for Victorians to vote on the state’s official fossil emblem, with a rich history lying behind each of the eight candidates.
The fossil emblem will celebrate the unique heritage of Victorian palaeontology and will join a majority of Australia’s other states in nominating one to call its own.
The Geological Survey of Victoria (GSV) has been documenting the state’s fossils since 1852, with many important discoveries making the grade.
GSV acting director Grant Clarke said one of the candidates for the title – scientifically named Isograptus victoriae – forms a ‘V’ for Victoria.
“One of the fossils in the running to be the state emblem are graptolites, a coral-like, marine colony made up of many tiny individual animals,” Clarke said.
“The Geological Survey of Victoria has used graptolite fossils to better understand the State’s geological evolution including the host rocks for gold, the state’s mineral emblem.”
Clarke added that fossils play a key role in the understanding of Victoria’s resources and should be recognised with an appropriate emblem.
“The identification of fossils during geological mapping is an integral part of determining the environment of deposition and geologic age of a rock, including any relationships with other rocks in the stratigraphy,” Clarke said.
Other candidates include the world’s first giant plant (known as Baragwanathia), a whale ancestor (called Janjucetus hunderi), and a giant bird from Bayside (named Pelagornis).
Voting on the official fossil emblem of Victoria closes on 4 October, 2021, after which time the winner will be announced by Museums Victoria.