TIL A group of Yemeni fishermen hit the jackpot when they found a floating whale carcass in February 2021, containing a lump of ambergris worth more than US$1.5 million. Also known as “floating gold”, ambergris is a rare substance found only in the belly of sperm whales and is used to make perfume.

Read more: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/yemen-fishermen-sperm-whale-ambergris-b1857635.html

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  1. Ambergris is formed from a secretion of the bile duct in the intestine of the sperm whale, and can be found floating on the sea or washed up on coastlines. It is sometimes found in the abdomens of dead sperm whales.Because the beaks of giant squids have been discovered within lumps of ambergris, scientists have theorized that the substance is produced by the whale’s gastrointestinal tract to ease the passage of hard, sharp objects that it may have eaten.

    Ambergris is passed like fecal matter. It is speculated that an ambergris mass too large to be passed through the intestines is expelled via the mouth, but this remains under debate.Ambergris takes years to form.

    The group of 35 fishermen in southern Aden province were alerted to a sperm whale carcass floating in the Gulf of Aden, before dragging it into shore in a small boat.

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