FIVE bags of partially flesh-covered dugong bones and a baby giraffe were unearthed last year when a walk-in freezer at Inveresk's Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery broke down.
For museum volunteer Deborah Osterhage, these are the sorts of mysteries uncovered each day in the natural sciences department.
The Australian Maritime College marine science student began volunteering at the museum last November, examining its plant and animal collections and registering information into its database to help state, national and international researchers in their work.
Ms Osterhage was yesterday piecing together the skeleton of the dugong that had mysteriously emerged from the museum's frozen storage.
Its flesh had partially rotted and had begun to be eaten by worms or maggots.
The bones were fully cleaned by flesh-eating bugs when museum staff uncovered the dugong's remains.
Although she avoided working with the bugs, Ms Osterhage said the volunteer work helped to put marine science theory into practice.
``Plus it's really fun - I get the opportunity to see things I'd never get to see,'' Ms Osterhage said.
``There are all sorts of crazy mysteries to be found in this museum.
``Every day is different.
``I've learnt so much over the last four months.''
Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said the city's charities, sporting clubs, emergency services and historical groups were full of skilled people keen to share their time and passion.
He encouraged Launceston residents to think about the volunteers they have encountered and nominate them for the Launceston City Council's Volunteer Recognition Awards.
Nomination forms can be found on the Launceston City Council's website at www.launceston.tas.gov.au.