Mumbai: A 53-year-old man was arrested after he was found selling 1.3 kg of ambergris — or whale vomit — worth Rs. 1.7 crore in Mumbai.

Notably, ambergris is a waxy substance that originates as a secretion in the intestines of the sperm whale, found floating in tropical seas and used in perfume manufacture. The sperm whale is an endangered species protected under the Wildlife Act.

“We seized 1.3 kg of ambergris, worth Rs. 1.7 crore, from him. It is a prohibited item. We have registered a case under relevant sections of the Wildlife Protection Act and have arrested Dupare,” a police official said.

Police received a tip-off, following which a joint team of police and forest department officials laid a trap on Saturday in the Cama Lane of suburban Vidyavihar area and arrested Rahul Dupare, police said.

Ambergris is soluble in alcohol, chloroform, ether and certain volatile and fixed oils.