Northern Territory police are scratching their heads trying to identify what looks like a severed finger, found by a man walking his dog on a Darwin beach.
The dog noticed the object on Sunday afternoon and the man feared he’d found the remains of a murder victim and contacted police.
Officers went to the beach, treating the object, which looks like it has a fingernail, as though it were human remains. Preliminary testing proved inconclusive and so the finger was sent for forensic examination.
Watch commander Brendan Lindner said officers at Casuarina police station were evenly split about whether the finger was real or not.
The pathologist determined it was in fact plant material. But what sort?
“The best we can come up with is Alcyonium digitatum – otherwise known as Dead Man’s Fingers,” Linden said. “If this is correct, then it’s worth pointing out that it is a finger after all, just not the human kind!”
Not a bad guess, a soft coral, but it’s rarely seen in Australia and is more often found in the northern waters, especially the cold Atlantic, rather than tropical climes.
Despite not yet knowing what it actually is, the investigation is now finalised and the suspicious pinky will be disposed of.
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