An almost perfectly preserved whale skeleton thought to be between 3,000 and 5,000 years old has been discovered in Thailand.

Iran Press/Asia: An almost perfectly preserved whale skeleton thought to be between 3,000 and 5,000 years old has been discovered in Thailand.

The bones were found in early November some 12km (7.5 miles) off the coast just to the west of Bangkok.

The 12m (39ft) long skeleton is thought to be that of a Bryde's whale.

Experts hope the find might provide "a window into the past," especially for research on sea levels and biodiversity.

The partially fossilized bones are "a rare find," mammal researcher Marcus Chua of the National University of Singapore told the BBC.

"There are few whale subfossils in Asia," he said, and even fewer ones are "in such good condition".

Pictures shared by Thailand's environment minister Varawut Silpa-Archa show the bones apparently almost entirely intact.

According to the politician, more than 80% of the skeleton has so far been recovered, including vertebrae, ribs, fins, and one shoulder blade.

The skeleton's head alone is estimated to be about 3m in length.

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