A resident of the Taiwanese island of Lanyu found a four-kilogram piece of frozen sperm whale vomit on the beach and became rich. Reported by the Taiwan News.
In March, a man named Li was fishing on the beach near the house and saw a black stone that exuded a sweet scent. He decided to take the find home. Li told the story to a friend, who advised him to send small stone samples to Kaohsiung National University for testing.
On Wednesday, October 7, Assistant Professor of Natural Sciences Cheng Shi-Yie, based on nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, confirmed that the object is ambergris. He added that this is a very rare and valuable find – its value is estimated at six million new Taiwan dollars (16.2 million rubles). Li said he was going to sell the stone and use the money for family expenses.
Ambergris is a waxy substance secreted in the intestines of sperm whales. It is often referred to as “sperm whale vomit” or “floating gold”. It is commonly used as a fixative in perfume production and can be very expensive depending on its age. Now the cost of ambergris on the international market is about 50 thousand dollars (3.8 million rubles) per kilogram.
Earlier it was reported that two residents of the Indian city of Ratnagiri, Maharashtra state, were imprisoned while trying to sell seven kilograms of sperm whale vomit. They were going to illegally sell ambergris, convincing potential buyers that its use helps to increase libido.