Man unearths £100,000′s worth of whale puke
VOMIT. You might think it is absolutely worthless, but not everyone does. Specifically, we’re talking about whale puke here and no, it isn’t some kind of Norwegian delicacy, but something more surprising.
Before you start going on the hunt for whale’s vomit, first be aware of what it is. Basically, it looks like a rock and smells like faeces. Still interested? Well, one chap found a great clump of it and it could well be worth in advance of £100,000.
Whale puke, or ambergris if you prefer, is a hugely sought after ingredient and is used in perfumes such as Chanel No.5. Next time a perfume counter woman from Chanel sprays you, you can shriek at them about floating whale vomit.
Either way, Ken Wilman discovered a 3kg lump while taking his dog for a walk on Morecambe beach, and said:
“I didn’t actually realise what it was at first, I couldn’t understand why Madge (the dog) was so interested in it.
“It smelled horrible.
“I left it, came back home and looked it up on the internet. When I saw how much it could be worth, I went back to the beach and grabbed it!”
This lucky scamp has already been offered $50,000 (£42,000) for his find, but he’s hanging on to his haul until it is verified as it’ll be worth much more.
Chris Hill, curator at the Aquarium of the Lakes in Cumbria, said it is ‘quite a find’.
“How much it’s worth will depend on how fresh it is, but it’s potentially $180,000 (£113,000). There are places in Europe that will buy it from you. They will age it, like a fine wine, and then test it for perfume.”
“If he verifies it, it could be like winning the Lottery,” he added.
And no, other animals’ puke isn’t worth anything at all, so don’t go scraping up cat sick into a jiffy bag and sending it to France because no-one is interested.