Whales are undoubtedly one of the most incredible animals in the sea, not only because of their large size, their intelligence, or their way of communicating but because their internal organs can also hold huge treasures.
That was the case of a group of fishermen from Yemen who found the dead body of the cetacean floating near the coast, when they got closer they perceived a rather strange smell coming from it so they decided to hook it up and take it ashore to check it. What they found when they opened the animal’s abdomen was something that they could not believe.
“It was an incredible moment of pure emotion, we had found gray amber”, said one of the fishermen to a local newspaper.
Gray Amber is a secretion from the intestines of the whale and is found floating in the sea, or in the sand of the coast. Although it does not normally exceed a few hundred grams, the largest block of amber gray on record weighed 1,400 pounds and came from a whale hunted in the Dutch East Indies.
For these fishermen, the find was worth the figure of $1.5 million, which was destined to help their relatives and the local village.
Yemen continues to face the consequences of a war that ranks them as one of the poorest countries in the world, so marketing this substance can be only compared to winning the lottery. Although they now have a different life situation, none of them gave up fishing and they continue to search for more treasures while doing what they love.
Scientists indicate that only 5% of the whales of this type known as “sperm whales” produce this substance. In the past, gray amber was used in medicine to prepare incense and aphrodisiacs, including in religious rituals in the Middle East where they were converted into oil and served to rub the participants.
Today it is a highly coveted material and is mostly used by large cosmetic companies to make the smell of perfumes last longer.