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1 Hour
Book Program
Year Levels


Megabugs are big (mega) bugs that existed on Earth during the Carboniferous period, from about 359 million to 300 million years ago. There were dragonflies three times the size of today’s largest species and centipedes 2m long. Scientists believe it was the higher level of oxygen, due to the vast lowland swamp forests that existed during that time, and the lack of decomposers that attributed to arthropods being much larger than today.

Learning Intentions

In this program students will:

  • Understand how fossil evidence can unlock our understanding of arthropods of the past


Students will:

  • Observe present day arthropods using magnifying glasses and microscopes, and collect measurements and other data
  • Use fossil evidence to observe arthropods from the Carboniferous period, and collect measurements and other data
  • Compare the difference between present day arthropods to those from the Carboniferous period
  • Discuss why arthropods were larger in the Carboniferous period.

Learn Online

Ecolinc Learn Online is a virtual outreach learning management system (LMS) offering interactive online courses for students and teachers. These courses can be undertaken either as a pre-visit, post-visit or stand-alone.

Students are encouraged to do the post-learning course on Ecolinc Learn Online called Digging Deeper: What happened to the Diprotodon after coming to Ecolinc.

Victorian Curriculum

Science – Biological sciences

  • Living things can be grouped on the basis of observable features and can be distinguished from non-living things (VCSSU057)

Science – Earth and space sciences

  • Earth’s surface changes over time as a result of natural processes and human activity (VCSSU062)

Mathematics – Using units of measurement

  • Level 3: Measure, order and compare objects using familiar metric units of length, area, mass and capacity (VCMMG140)
  • Level 4: Use scaled instruments to measure and compare lengths, masses, capacities and temperatures (VCMMG165)