Two dugong bones discovered in the Dammam Formation
Arabia Separates from Africa (Eocene)
Object Name: Dugong Bone
Period: Arabia Separates from Africa (Eocene)
Date: 55–30 Million Years Ago
Dimensions: 123.8 mm (H) x 26.5 mm (W) x 14.3 mm (D)
Medium: fossil
Registration Number: QNM.2008.14.387
Place Of Discovery/Findspot:  Dammam Formation
These are two fossilized bone fragments, a vertebra and a rib, which are believed to have belonged to a sea cow or dugong. They were discovered in Qatar, within a layer of sedimentary rocks called the Dammam Formation, which dates back to the Middle Eocene period, around 40 million years ago. This group of sea cow fossils is considered to be the earliest known examples found in the region.
In this period the Arabian Plate began to separate from the African Plate and moved gradually towards the Eurasian Plate.
The Arabian Gulf and the Zagros Mountains formed as a result of the Arabian and Eurasian Plates colliding. Qatar was home to a range of marine species. Fossils of ancient plants and animals from this time have been discovered, including sea urchins, sharks, sawfish and dugongs.
Dammam Formation