Egypt opens first Museum of fossils of the Middle East
In the Egyptian desert valley of Wadi al-Khitaan, about 150 km southwest of Cairo, founded the first Museum of Middle East, dedicated to the ancient fossils. Here you can visually explore the structure of ancient whale, extinct many thousands of years ago. The Fossil Museum was built by a grant from Italy of 2 billion euros. The main exhibit of the Museum — the skeleton of a whale with a length of 20 m and an age of 37 million years. The exhibit shows how modern whales evolved from land mammals. In the Legendary Valley of the Whales were found many prehistoric tools used by early people, as well as various remains of whales, confirming the evolutionary transition of whales from early amphibians to aquatic creatures.
But as the fossils of whales occurred in the middle of the hottest desert? This valley was submerged under water about 40 — 50 million years ago. She was covered with the waters of the Tethys sea, reaching the southern parts of the Mediterranean current. Wadi al-Khitaan. or Valley of the Whales contains valuable collection of fossils of ancient whales, archaeoceti. These fossils explain one of the greatest mysteries of the development of whales: transformation of a whale in an ocean mammal from a previous life as a land animal. The fossils of Wadi al-Khitaan otnosjatsja time 50 million years BC where is archaeocetes in the last stages of development from land animals to a marine existence. They almost have the body shape of modern whales while retaining certain primitive aspects of skull structure and teeth, and hind legs. Many whale skeletons have been preserved in good condition, allowing us to explore even stomach contents. The Museum was opened in the government programme to attract tourists scared off by the recent terrorist attacks and armed attacks. But the Minister of environment Khaled Fahmy cautioned against the interpretation of the Museum as “a complete proof of the theory of evolution”, which is in contradiction with Islam. “It’s a whole different conversation,” he said. “We’re still connected to our Islamic belief system”.