Take Two®

News and culture through the lens of Southern California. Hosted by A Martínez

Ambergris: Why rare sperm whale excrement is akin to 'Floating Gold'

by Take Two®

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Image of Ambergris, a solid, waxy, flammable substance of a dull grey or blackish color produced in the digestive system of sperm whales. Creative Commons

Last week, a British man walking his dog on a beach in northern England came upon what looked like a waxy and smelly soccer ball-sized rock. Turns out, it wasn't an ordinary rock, it was something called ambergris, or Sperm whale excrement, and it's worth more than $100,000. 

We'll talk to Christopher Kemp, the author of the book, "Floating Gold: A Natural and Unnatural History of Ambergris." 

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