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Pygmy Blue Whale

(Balaenoptera musculus brevicauda)

MAGNT has an exciting opportunity to reinstate the spectacular Pygmy Blue Whale skeleton to the newly refurbished Colin Jack-Hinton Maritime Gallery.​

​The Pygmy Blue Whale is a subspecies of the largest animal known to have ever lived. MAGNT holds in its collection an incredible 21.9m skeleton found washed ashore at Cape Hotham in the mid-1980’s.

It is the only known specimen of this species found on the coastline of the Northern Territory.

The skeleton has not been on public display since 1999, but is still affectionately remembered by the local community. It is a valuable scientific record of this enigmatic species in the Northern Territory and an awe-inspiring exhibit.​


Your donation will help MAGNT to carry out the equally enormous task of installing the bones; an estimated 1000 hours of work. This involves the meticulous preparation of the bones, fabrication of the steel support frame and hanging the skeleton on display for all to enjoy.


Whale skeleton at MAGNT Bullocky Point, before repair work, 1991.


​The Pygmy Blue Whale (Balaenoptera musculus brevicauda) skeleton was recovered from a mangrove forest on the east side of Cape Hotham (near the Adelaide River mouth) in the mid-1980s.

​​Some of the vertebrae had been souvenired by fishers and other visitors to the area. Museum staff collected the ribs and the remaining vertebrae by boat. The skull and one of the lower jaw bones were recovered with the assistance of an Australian Army helicopter and crew.​

​As Blue Whales have 64 vertebrae, 11 are known to be missing from this specimen. The total weight of the bones is estimated to be a hefty 3,500 kg!


Help us to refresh the Northern Territory's
treasured Pygmy Blue Whale skeleton


Be part of a unique collective and purchase your piece of history.

At the fundraising gala, a limited opportunity to "purchase" part
of the Blue Whale skeleton will be made available.

Your valued contribution to the preservation and display of the Blue Whale will be acknowledged on a plaque, once the skeleton is reinstalled in the Colin Jack-Hinton Maritime Gallery.


The Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory is a not-for-profit organisation. The Northern Territory's premier cultural and scientific institution relies on the generous contributions of donors and corporate partners to continue its important work for future generations.