Lonely Planet Writer

Ten-year-old boy spots dinosaur error at London's Natural History Museum

Do you know your Oviraptor dinosaur from your Protoceratops? A 10-year-old English boy certainly does and he recently impressed the Natural History Museum in London after noticing that one of its dinosaur signs was labelled incorrectly.

The Dinosaur gallery at the Natural History Museum. London . Image: Feargus Cooney
The Dinosaur Gallery at the Natural History Museum, London. Image: Feargus Cooney

Charlie Edwards was staying for the night at the ‘Dino Snores for Kids’ sleepover, which gives young people the opportunity to stay for the night at the museum. He made his discovery during the dinosaur trail, where the lights are turned off and the children look for clues as to what dinosaurs the fossils belong to, using their torches. “I read this one sign that had an egg but then it showed the full dinosaur side-by-side comparison to a human and I saw that the shape of it was wrong,” Charlie told the BBC.

The Natural History Museum, London. Image: Johnnie Pakington
The Natural History Museum, London. Image: Johnnie Pakington

Charlie was adamant that he was correct even though his mum and dad, Justin and Jade Edwards, didn’t believe him initially as they were convinced the museum wouldn’t have made an error. The young boy was so sure though that his parents eventually emailed the Natural History Museum about Charlie’s suspicions, and were surprised and delighted to receive a letter confirming that their son’s instincts were correct.

Oviraptor (left) and protoceratops (right) - Art work by John Francis. Image: Dea Picture Library
Oviraptor (left) and Protoceratops (right) – Art work by John Francis. Image: Dea Picture Library

The letter went on to say that the incorrect label on the sign showing a Protoceratops would be replaced by one depicting an Oviraptor, and that the museum, which recently unveiled the transformation of its grand hall, hoped Charlie would keep up his interest in palaeontology. “I am really really proud of him,” his mum told The Telegraph. “Charlie has Asperger syndrome and tends to find a subject he loves and tries to learn so much about it, so it’s really nice that he’s been able to show what he’s learnt and that knowledge base.”