Wednesday, 27. August 2014
29. 01. 13. - 16:00
They may look like something out of the set of a sci-fi movie but these alien looking creatures are extremely rare fossils of animal life that lived on the earth an incredible 300 million years ago.
The rare fossil that inspired the Swiss creator of the alien films captured the imagination so much in Switzerland when they went on display that they also attracted what police believe was a fossil collector - who broke into the case and stole the Aathal dinosaur museum's prize exhibit.
Last week police released this photo in a bid to help track down the thief and get the exhibit returned.
And now the exhibit has been returned after it was put into the post box inside a padded envelope.
Museum curator Dr. Thomas Bolliger said: "It was comparatively undamaged although one of the arms had broken off. It really is a remarkable fossil and shows two separate species of a spineless animal that lived at the bottom of the sea around 300 million years ago."
The alien looking creatures were even believed to have inspired Swiss creator of the aliens in the hit film series "Alien" - Hans Rudolf "Ruedi" Giger.
The Swiss surrealist painter, sculptor, and set designer led the special effects team that won an Academy Award for Best Achievement for Visual Effects on the film Alien and its successor films.
Police issued this photograph of the missing aliens and appealed for help in getting it returned.
A spokesman said: "It is a very valuable but also a very unique fossil and it will be very difficult for anybody to sell or indeed to keep secret given the publicity around the theft."
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