The Natural History Museum of the Ministry of Heritage and Culture (MHC) will showcase fish and fish bones found in the Omani waters.
“The Omani waters are home to over 1,000 fish species. All over the world countries have dedicated museums showcasing fish that are found in their respective waters. We have over 1,000 species. Some are very unique and found in our waters only. Once the museum has the collection, we will know about the fish found in the Omani waters,” said Azzah al Jabri, director, Natural History Museum in MHC.
She said that the museum has dolphins and whales as exhibits but it will be expanded to include fishes too. “We will know the genera, the families and orders of the fish. We will also know why some fishes are becoming extinct.”
One of the rare displays exhibited in the Natural History Museum’s whale hall is the huge skeleton of a sperm whale which washed ashore in 1986. It also displays skeletons, bones and skulls of whales. “The importance of this hall lies in identifying the types and sizes of whales and the depths they are found in the seas.”
Other rare displays exhibited include traces of tree fossils found in Al Huquf dating back more than 260mn years, in addition to the remains of coral fossils dating back over 270mn years found in Wadi Sahtan in Rustaq. Also, displayed are remnants of jaw teeth belonging to a specific type of monkey, as well as the teeth of pre-historic animals dating back between 15 and 35mn years.
The museum displays some aspects of the lives of different types of reptiles, colourful butterflies, and other organisms who live in the wilds of the sultanate, as well as the remains of trees and fossilised bones. “We are waiting for the new Natural History Museum to come up. Once it is in place, our collection will be on display,” she said.