Don’t think our dinos cause chaos? We followed Dina, dispatch agent, to find out what a typical day for her is like
When I clock in first thing the triceratops are typically grouchy and utahraptors hyper. All our animals are
fed before shipment so they’re good and sleepy for the trip, but that means I’m a glorified dinosaur caterer half the time. After downing my coffee, I still feel sleepy somehow, which is why I try not to make eye contact with the utahraptors.
And so begins the first crisis of the day: Trey rushes up and tells me that someone split steroids over the stegasaurus kibble. They’ll be more energetic when they arrive, but we need to make sure they don’t wake up and try to walk around on the plane. We don’t need another catastrophe like the one we had in May 2011! That one was hard to explain to the NTSB.
Our assistant compliance officer Don asks me how we’re going to weigh our brachiosaurus when the scales are broken. It was yesterday’s 76-ton patagotitan that probably did them in. I send him to the warehouse next door with a note asking if they’ve got any dinosaur weighing scales. In the meantime, Sara asks me to respond about a returned crate. It’s labelled “Triceratops”, but the customer says it’s a teenage torosaurus. Easy mix up to make. The only difference is the lack of a long nasal horn in torosaurus and sometimes juvenile triceratops are late bloomers and haven’t grown into their nasal horn yet.
I’m now urgently trying to dole out orders to Sara, but one of the loading machines in the back is making such a racket preparing the crates that I can only hear every third word. Trey appears panicked, yelling that the loading machine isn’t broken, but that there is an escaped Spinosaurus that hasn’t been fed yet! The 59 foot long semi-aquatic predator is now top priority. Its 7 ft sail is stuck in the door to the lunchroom and the hungry reptile is moaning in hunger and pain. The sail is full of tiny nerves as it is used for thermal regulation and quite tender. Luckily the frustrated animal isn’t able to squeeze into the lunchroom, so my carefully packed lunch of fish fingers and pea soup is safe! Sara calmly unloads three tranquilizer darts into the Spinosaurus. Trey then gingerly wraps the animal in a harness as I bring the fork lift over to get the 49 foot therapod back in its crate. I left it with its typical mid-day meal… two bathtubs full of farm raised salmon and squid. This time I made sure the crate was secured and loaded it onto the departing container ship myself. Now it is someone else’s problem. Time for my well-deserved pea soup!