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    Dominicana On Line - El Portal de la República Dominicana

    National Stone: Amber

    This plant resin converted into rock comes from thousand year old trees and narrow tunnels, and is named amber. The petrified bits that preserve fossilized insects abound in the Cibao area, in the island's central region.

    Scientists that search for the quality of amber deposits in the Middle East, Australia, Canada, China, Mexico and the Dominican Republic grant greater value to the Dominican gems, due to their fossil preservation.

    A 30 million year old gecko, a 20 million year old mosquito or a species that ceased to exist on the planet several million years ago still exhibit their forms as small museum pieces in an iridescent gem. The majority of the rocks extracted and sold are of yellow and brown colors. A few reddish gems have been found. Also, thanks to local nature, there are some with blue undertones, but they are extremely scarce and therefore very valuable. They have only been found in the Cibao region, while in the East, many pieces have an almost white hue.

    The Dominican Dirección General de Minería established that the amber deposits are found in sedimentary drainage basins formed by the fusion of shale and arsenics from the Yanigua and Puerto Plata formations from the Eocene-Miocene period.

    Other deposits are located and extracted in the Cordillera Septentrional, province of Santiago, in the north, in the communities of Los Cacaos and Palo Alto; in the Cordillera Oriental, in the municipality of El Valle of the Hato Mayor province, in the east of the country.

    Extraction is carried out by hand, using underground mining techniques (shafts and tunnels). The miners that extract the mineral group themselves into cooperatives. The current national production average is approximately 300 pounds per month.

     

     

    For more information, visit the Museo Mundo de Ambar in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.











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