Mounting Moby’s Skull in the Grand Gallery

Mounting Moby's Skull in the Grand Gallery

The skull of a sperm whale found beached on the banks of the River Forth is now on display at the National Museum of Scotland.

The 40ft whale known affectionately as ‘Moby’ became a cause célèbre after being sighted swimming up the Forth rather than out to sea. Rescuers, including BP tugs and the pleasure boat Maid of the Forth, tried desperately to push him back out to sea. Unfortunately their efforts were in vain and sadly Moby beached and died on the foreshore at Airth on 31 March 1997 – the first sperm whale to be stranded in the Forth in over 200 years.

Following his death, Moby’s skeleton was prepared by museum staff and is now in National Museums Scotland’s Natural Science collections, which is home to several million specimens, including one of the largest marine mammal collections in the world.

The one-and-a-half ton skull is displayed in the Grand Gallery, alongside fascinating artifacts including the Cockroft-Walton Generator and the 12ft long Tahitian feast bowl.

George Brown & Sons were given the task of fabricating a mount to display Moby’s skull and lower jaws in the Grand Gallery at the National Museum of Scotland.