Published on June 28th, 2016 | by Laura Soul


Episode 66: Saving Mongolia’s Dinosaurs

Mongolia is a vast country with fossils from almost every period in the history of life. Important specimens representing the origin of birds, the origin of mammals, many unique dinosaur species, and the first dinosaur eggs to be identified, have all been found within it’s borders. For this reason it has long been the focus of field expeditions by Mongolian and international academics, but the remote nature of many of the sites has lead to fossil trafficking – where Mongolian specimens are illegally shipped out of the country, often labelled as something else entirely. In this episode we speak to Bolortsetseg Minjin, a Mongolian palaeontologist who is helping bring many important stolen specimens back home, including the tyrannosaur Tarbosaurus bataar. We chat to her, and her colleague Thea Boodhoo, about the history of palaeonotlogy in Mongolia, and about several projects they are running to spread knowledge to Mongolian people about the importance of the rich natural history heritage of their country. We also find out about their moveable museum and plans for a big fossil outreach tour this summer in the Gobi desert, for which they are currently trying to raise funds.

Part A:

Part B:

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More information about the institute for the study of Mongolian dinosaurs, which Bolor founded and is now the director of, can be found here

The crowdfunding campaign, information about the project this summer, rewards, and how to contribute can all be found here

The flaming cliffs at Bayanzag

Bolor teaching conservation and showing a group how plaster jacketing is done during an outreach session


The moveable museum that Bolor and Thea will be taking out across the Gobi desert this summer

Flaming Cliffs - Velociraptor

Palaeoartist impression of a velociraptor that was found at the flaming cliffs. Image by Emily Willoughby.

Flaming Cliffs - Oviraptor

Palaeoartist impression of an oviraptor found at the flaming cliffs. Image by Emily Willoughby.


Enjoying dinosaurs during an outreach session in Mongolia during 2009


The institute for the study of Mongolian dinosaurs was founded in 2007 and is directed by Bolor

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